Promoting Digital Literacy and Cyber Security


India paved its path towards digitalization on 1st July 2015, and our surroundings have not been the same. Since 2015, we have witnessed a massive digital leap throughout the years. Digitalization has spread across and contributed to various fields, including education, agriculture, business, and most importantly, communication. It has successfully bridged the gap between two poles that lie thousands of miles apart through the tap of a button. The main objective of this initiative was to uplift and educate the rural sector of the country. And so, BharatNet was introduced across rural areas, a system that helps connect all gram panchayats under one roof. Till now, India has successfully managed to connect more than one lakh gram panchayats with a strong internet broadband connection. Educating children, increasing infrastructure, and creating awareness amongst individuals of all age groups was a target that was successfully achieved. These initiatives by the Indian government have had a positive impact on two major sectors - agriculture and finance. Through the agricultural sector, farmers can increase their knowledge and use upscaled and modern methods of farming that help them to carry out their activities with ease. One of the greatest achievements India has experienced is the creation of the Aadhaar database which is the world's largest biometric-based digital identity.

Digitalization has opened doors of opportunities for millions of people in our country. Like every coin has two sides, this digital growth, too, comes with its set of advantages and disadvantages. Hundreds and thousands of people of all age groups report cybercrime they face on digital platforms, and this majorly consists of women. The internet eventually becomes a difficult platform for women to exist, and the reasons can be traced back to illiteracy and lack of digital awareness. This increase in the rate of cybercrime has unfortunately disrupted the coexistence and basic ecosystem of India. The more India digitizes, the bar of cybercrimes increases. Digital media, being an intangible asset, can get very addictive. One may lose their sense of identity and commit certain acts, often unknowingly, that would get them into trouble. So, it is vital for everyone, especially the young minds of the nation, to know and understand the type of content they consume. An understanding between differentiating good and bad is required.

With this new and rapid growth in technology, it’s essential that all users make the most of it in a positive way. Clubbing digitalization with education is one of the biggest and most important step and this gap has been successfully bridged with the new and advanced learning tool - ICT, Information Communication Technology. ICT is the byproduct of academics and entertainment. Through ICT, the process of learning and understanding is simplified, to make full use of this gift of technology, we at Giving for Good Foundation along with our implementing partner, IDEA Foundation came up with “E-sakshar” - an initiative to educate, and create awareness amongst women, children, and the youth on cyber safety and the importance of technology.

The main objective of this project was to create an opportunity for industry bodies to enhance digital literacy in the country and to teach women and youth basic computer knowledge through which they can then join advanced courses in the future. ICT was used as an essential outreach tool to educate women and the youth on cyber-safety and the dos and don'ts of digital media. Up until now, 4 educational centers have been set up in Pune City and 200 + young children and women have actively participated in this initiative. To complete this project, GfG set up a brand-new digital center, functioning as a SMART classroom for the children. Slow and steady, GfG aims to conquer all areas and educate as many people as we can. Together, we are all unstoppable.  Overall, this rapid growth in technology has been an eye-opener for us, what about you?