Ambassador program to help with cybersecurity set to launch in Iowa

AMES — The Iowa Cyber Hub is launching a “cybersecurity ambassador” program to help educate everyone about threats.

Iowa State University Cybersecurity professor Doug Jacobson says some of the ambassadors will be students. “And they can go out and into the community, then go out into the schools, and really promote the idea of cybersecurity or talk to people about various cybersecurity issues,” he says.

They will also have community ambassadors. “Which are ambassadors that are in an IT or a cyber field already. And again, arming them with materials and, stuff that they can go out into their community, going to retirement homes, going to other types of venues, and really just trying to get people to be more conscious of the things they can do to be safer online.” Jacobson says.

He says they are working through some of the logistics on how the ambassadors will get the word out in their local communities. Jacobson says for some groups it should be easy to do. “Take a an ambassador chapter in high school, they have a captive audience already,” he says, “they could go talk to students middle school, they could talk to their peers, and go down and talk some the students in the grade schools.”

Jacobson leads the Cyber Hub and says they will also have people who can help follow up after the ambassadors meet with groups. “If questions come across. There’ll be a resource that people can go to, to ask those questions. Because often times you’ll give a presentation and a lot of questions that come up and people will think of things afterwards. And there may be some specific questions. So we’ll have a resource for people to ask those questions,” Jacobson says.

The program will officially launch on October 31st.