Virtual World for Awareness and Learning on Information Security (V-ALERT)

Project: Virtual World for Awareness and Learning on Information Security 

Short name: V-ALERT
Programme: Lifelong Learning Programme
HOU Coordinator: Michalis Xenos, Professor HOU
Start Date: 01/11/2013
End Date: 31/10/2015 

The V-ALERT project co-financed by the European Union (Lifelong Learning Programme) and aims to create a 3D on-line virtual world that will provide training for different target groups on the topic of Information Security in a safe and interactive environment with ability to adapt to different learning needs of the end users.

Computers and the Internet are important tools used by people to support significant parts of their everyday life. However, there are certain risks involved in ICT usage and thus all ICT users, regardless age and skills, should be aware of the principles of information security and data protection. At a European Level action has been taken to promote the cyber security awareness among citizens, modifying individuals' perception of cyber threats and providing updated security information through education and good practices.

The rationale of V-ALERT project is to first aid towards the development of information security culture (focusing mainly to students and teachers) and then bridge the gap between awareness and coping (focusing on enterprise employees, ICT students and academics). The aim is the achievement of an in-depth understanding regarding safety threats and protective measures and actions. For the achievement of this objective, an online 3D Virtual World Learning Environment will be developed, supporting i) in-world experiential learning activities based on scenarios designed out of real-life information security risk cases, ii) "safely" exposure to safety risks, which should be recognized and overcome through appropriate actions. The Virtual World Learning environment will be designed to be fully customisable, multilingual and easily adaptable not only to new threat scenarios, but also to the learning needs of different end users, implementing appropriate context-aware recommender systems.  Project outputs include, among others, i) conceptual design of information security threat scenarios concerning the needs of each target group, ii) a 3D virtual world implementing these scenarios through online engaging learning activities, iii) supportive documentation and material for potential users, iv) reports on the pilot implementations of the environment in each partner country.

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