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ESET & Big Smoke announce winners of Australian children's cyber safety writing contest
Mon, 18th Dec 2023

ESET, a global power in digital security, and The Big Smoke Media Group have announced the winners of their Australian children's writing competition. The competition was launched as part of Cyber Security Awareness Month to raise the profile of online safety and cyber education.

Aiming to foster the safest cyberspace in the world, the competition welcomed entries from young, aspiring creatives across Australia. Entries were reviewed by a panel of the country's leading business figures within the cyber and education sectors, alongside respected journalists.

Parvinder Walia, the President of ESET's Asia Pacific and Japan division, expressed his delight at the remarkable response to the competition. Walia was pleasantly surprised by the abundance of applications and felt privileged to contribute to such a meaningful initiative. As a parent himself, Walia conveyed his passion for equipping families with the necessary tools and knowledge to establish a secure online environment for children.

Walia stated, "I was overwhelmed by the number of applications received and was thrilled to have been part of such a great cause. As a parent, I'm passionate about providing families with the tools and knowledge they need to ensure a safe online environment for children."

Mr Walia continued by expressing his pride in the competitors, stating that as he read through the submissions, he felt a sense of pride in recognising the exceptional minds contributing to the cyber safety conversation. He extended congratulations to all the deserving winners and expressed confidence that they "will no doubt lead the way for Australia to become the safest cyberspace in the world."

Alexandra Senter, the Founder and CEO of The Big Smoke, also expressed admiration for the contestants' submissions. She was moved by the determination evident in all the entries and impressed by the next generation's keen understanding of cyber safety and its impact on their lives.

Senter said, "I was moved by the tenacity of all the submissions and impressed by the next generation's understanding of cyber safety and the implications on their lives. I'm honoured to help shine a spotlight on these determined young writers. Congratulations, you should all be very proud."

The winners announced were Ashton Phillips in the 10-12-year-old category with 'How to make Australia the Safest Cyber Secure Country in the World,' Rebecca Li, aged 13-15, with her entry 'Becoming a Human Firewall,' and finally, Yiyang Yu in the 16-18 category with 'Making Australia the Safest Cyber Secure Country.'

Esteemed journalist Trisha de Borchgrave, part of the judging panel, praised the entrants' efforts. "The entries reflect what we know to be true, that only when you embed our professional sectors with the diversity of thoughtful contributions and sense of collective responsibility that these students have shown can we feel a degree of optimism for the future."

The competition was made possible by the commitment and expertise of the judging panel members, who included the founders of the CyberPass, Cyber Safety Project, Internet Safe Education, The Big Smoke, along with Trisha de Borchgrave. Both ESET and Big Smoke Media Group are proud to aid in fostering a future of cyber safety with the help of Australia's promising young talents.