The International Cyber Security Summer School for doctoral candidates and scientists will take place on 10–14 July in Tallinn and its focus will be on attacks in cyberspace that prey on human weaknesses, and on how to recognize and avoid them. The summer school, being held for the third year, brings to Estonia experts and practitioners of criminology, forensics, IT law, computer science and psychology, there are participants from a total of 16 countries all over the world.

Social engineering, or influencing people in order to obtain confidential information, is a major concern in the field of cyber security. "The human factor is often regarded as the weakest link and someone is always clicking on a link they really shouldn’t click on. Sadly, the education and awareness in this area is low and for this reason cyber criminals are so successful. We must raise this bar and train our next generation of cyber experts better," explains the organizer of the summer school, Tallinn University of Technology Department of Software Science professor Olaf Maennel.

Current cyber threats are more challenging than ever, targeting the backbone of our financial systems, our critical infrastructure and our democratic processes. Adversaries are becoming ever more stealthy and reckless and often they are helped by our own digital footprint, says one of the keyspeakers of the summer school, a former head of CERT-EU Freddy Dezeure. In the summer school, Dezeure talks about the principal cyber threats that threaten the information society, and also highlights what may be expected in the future based on the current trends. In addition to Dezeure, in this year's summer school Aunshul Rege, associate professor at Temple University, Professor Tobias Eggendorfen of Ravensburg-Weingarten University, psychologist Kätlin Konstabel of Estonian Center for Applied Psychology, cyber security expert Ralph Echemendia from the United States and many others help to open up the topic of social engineering.

"Teaching and training methods are lacking — and this is for a very good reason: social engineering is a hybrid area covering psychology, technology and criminology. Furthermore, it includes and targets humans, which becomes quickly borderline ethical," adds Maennel. "As Estonia is on the forefront of Cyber Security in many aspects, the topic of social engineering education should not be neglected. Hopefully, this summer school will make a small but important contribution to a safe internet for everyone in the future."

The Summer School is organized by the Information Technology Foundation for Education, Tallinn University of Technology, IT Law Program of the University of Tartu, University of Adelaide of Australia, and the University of Ravensburg-Weingarten. This is supported by the Ministry of Education and Research, the Estonian Internet Foundation and the Baltic-American Freedom Foundation.

Cyber Security Summer School has been initiated by the Ministry of Education and Research with the aim of increasing the international competitiveness of Estonia's cyber security education and increasing the visibility of the Estonian e-governance, contributing to the development of an international cooperation network and increasing the number of high-performing foreign teachers and students in the cyber security curricula of IT education in Estonia.

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