Students' Cybersecurity Awareness at a Private Tertiary Educational Institution
Keywords:cybersecurity awareness (CSA), password management, cyberbullying, phishing, malware, identity theft, pirated content
Internet-based attacks have become prevalent and are expected to increase as technology ubiquity increases. Consequently, cybersecurity has emerged as an essential concept in everyday life. Cybersecurity awareness (CSA) is a key defence in the protection of people and systems. The research presented in this article aimed to assess the levels of CSA among students at a private tertiary education institution in South Africa. A questionnaire tested students in terms of four variables: cybersecurity knowledge; self-perception of cybersecurity skills, actual cybersecurity skills and behaviour; and cybersecurity attitudes. The responses revealed several misalignments, including instances of "cognitive dissonance" between variables, which make the students potentially vulnerable to cyber-attacks. The findings demonstrate the need for targeted CSA campaigns that address the specific weaknesses of particular populations of users.
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