Promoting digital skills and online safety with ASEAN initiative

May 23, 2023 | 16:24
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The ASEAN Digital Literacy Programme National Closing Workshop was held on May 23 to encourage the community's inclusive digital skill development and online safety.
Promoting digital skills and online safety with ASEAN initiative

“I am very touched. Many sighted people do not have the opportunity like us today. These are all useful and necessary knowledge in this 4.0 era. It is truly that no one will be left behind," said Do Van Dien, a 75-year-old man from the Blind Association of Dong Da district in Hanoi, Vietnam, who participated in the training on identifying and preventing fake news and online scams as part of the ASEAN Digital Literacy Programme (ASEAN DLP).

Amid the pandemic crisis, viral online misinformation and disinformation were spreading unchecked, to the point that the World Economic Forum identified it as one of the biggest threats to society. The number of online fraud cases has skyrocketed from 139 million cases in 2019 to 293 million cases in 202. Recognizing this issue, the ASEAN Foundation, with the support from, has implemented the ASEAN DLP.

The regional programme aims to combat misinformation and disinformation by providing digital literacy training for youth, teachers, parents, community leaders, and government officials together with local implementing partners.

The scheme also includes a strong awareness campaign element to ensure that the importance of media and information literacy is better understood by a wider audience and inspires people to become the agents of change that can help detect and prevent hoaxes and fake news from spreading.

In Vietnam, the Vietnet Information Technology and Communication Centre (Vietnet-ICT) was selected as the ASEAN DLP implementing partner to deliver digital literacy training.

Promoting digital skills and online safety with ASEAN initiative

From August 2022 to February 2023, the ASEAN Foundation and Vietnet-ICT collaborated with the Departments of Education and Training in Vinh Phuc and Lam Dong provinces, along with other local partners, to conduct comprehensive training for 224 master trainers. These trainers represented diverse demographics and included youth, the elderly, people with disabilities, government officers, educators, and teachers.

The training covered essential topics related to media literacy and online safety, including identifying fake news on social networks, understanding psychological framing on social networks, online safety practices, privacy protection, and cybersecurity measures.

Through a combination of online and offline methods, the training reached more than 64,000 beneficiaries from 30 provinces across Vietnam.

During the programme, master trainers facilitated engaging activities such as competitions, discussion forums, debates, and both offline and online classes to deliver the initiative's content. Assessment results showed that over 99 per cent of the beneficiaries demonstrated correct understanding and implemented safe practices in media literacy and online safety.

As a recognition of their significant contributions throughout the programme's implementation, the top 30 active master trainers were honoured at the conference on summarizing and awarding the "ASEAN Digital Literacy Programme" on May 23 in Hanoi.

The event also features a panel discussion on digital skills and safety bringing together stakeholders including representatives of government officers, community organisations, educators, teachers, youth and people with disabilities.

The panel discussion has served as a space for exchanging knowledge and ideas, fostering collaboration networks, and promoting the development of digital skills and internet safety in Vietnam.

Ngo Minh Trang, director of Vietnet-ICT said, "Through a diverse approach and deploying it to many different target groups, including people with disabilities and the elderly, we want to ensure that that everyone, regardless of their age, ability and condition, has access to digital empowerment and resources."

Mahmudi Yusbi, head of programme at the ASEAN Foundation said,“We meet here to share our experience and appreciate all the master trainers who spread digital literacy awareness in Vietnam. They are a part of a grand effort in fighting misinformation and disinformation in the country. We hope to strengthen the digital literacy skills not only in Vietnam but across all ASEAN communities.”

Promoting digital skills and online safety with ASEAN initiative
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