March 31st 2021
Following its success in raising awareness of online safety and security issues in many Pacific island countries, Get Safe Online is now introducing a range of its popular websites in different languages.
Launching national websites in local languages across seven countries in the Pacific from March 2021, including national websites for Vanuatu (Bislama), Fiji (iTaukei), Tonga (Tongan), Samoa (Samoan), Kiribati (Kiribati), Tuvalu (Tuvalu) and Papua New Guinea (Tok Pisin), the websites will be accessible at the following addresses :
Papua New Guinea: www.papuanewguinea.getsafeonline.org
Get Safe Online hopes the new updated websites in the vernacular of these countries will greatly increase their effectiveness. Previously, the websites were available in English, although some marketing materials for the sites – radio ads, social media posts and online tips – were produced in some island languages.
“We’re thrilled to be launching these local language websites,” said Jenny Thornton, Head of International Relations for Get Safe Online. “We see these sites as the natural evolution of our efforts to share online safety and security messages with as many people as possible across the Pacific. When we launched the local language version of the Rwanda website in Africa just before Christmas, we received an amazing response. We’re hoping for the same excitement here in the Pacific.”
The initiative has been supported by local partners including British High Commissions.
Paul Welsh, British Deputy High Commissioner for Fiji remarked: “It is excellent that there will be a Get Safe Online website in the iTaukei language. The messages around online safety need to be accessible and inclusive. We want as many people as possible to know what steps they can take to enjoy the online world safely.”
British High Commissioner-designate for Tonga, Lucy Joyce said: “I welcome the new ‘Get Safe Online’ website, which aims to raise awareness in business and social communities of risks, and safety measures, which will protect people and business from online security risks.”
Chief Executive Officer for the Samoa Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, Fualau Talatalaga Mata’u Matafeo, wishes to congratulate the Get Safe Online Pacific for the launching of this web page in Samoan language. “Having information available in our local language facilitates learning and encourages communities to seek help. No matter how useful these online safety measures are, if people do not understand, it won’t create a positive impact.” This platform is another exciting milestone for Samoa in raising the level of its cyber security awareness, and as the Hon. Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Afioga Afamasaga Toeolesulusulu Lepuia’i Rico Tupai’s has continuously spoken about that “cyber security is a shared responsibility, and this calls upon all internet users, to be vigilant and informed about online threats, and how their own actions can be the first line of defence.”
The Director of ICT for Ministry of Information, Communications, Transport and Tourism Development (MICTTD) in Kiribati, Wayne Reiher added, “The launching of a Kiribati version of the Get Safe Online website marks yet another milestone in the collaboration between the Government of Kiribati and Get Safe Online. The sheer amount of useful contents in the English version of the website highlights the resourcefulness and experience of Get Safe Online in the cyber security awareness space. Having the contents translated into the local language is very important as the majority of the internet users in Kiribati have low competency of the English language.
“The translation, which began toward the end of 2020, is a very difficult and complicated process. The Kiribati language lacks most of the technical terms used to emphasize the concept of cyber security and that makes it difficult to achieve the objective which is to make the articles clear and understandable to non-technical people. However, despite the challenges the project is highly successful and the people of Kiribati will only reap the benefits of it. The government appreciates and grateful for the fruitful collaboration with Get Safe Online and look forward to more success in the future.”
The Get Safe Online websites provide simple, helpful tips on a wide range of online security issues. From password protection to ensuring that financial transactions are safe, the nine Pacific island websites have been extremely popular and are visited by a wide range of users – from business owners to students and fishermen.
The Get Safe Online Pacific project has been funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office’s UK Commonwealth Cyber Security Programme. Apart from its Rwanda operation, Get Safe Online has also been operating in various Caribbean countries for more than a year.
Andrew Dinsley – Deputy Head (Programmes), Cyber Policy Department, FCDO, said: “The Pacific region matters to the UK. Our ambition is to increase and deepen our engagement, as a force for good, addressing together, with regional partners, new security challenges in cyberspace. The launch of Get Safe Online’s cyber awareness websites in local languages across the Pacific demonstrates our commitment. It is vitl that citizens and businesses have access to information that will help protect them online. We are proud to support Get Safe Online’s awareness raising campaign, which has so far reached over 7 million people across the Pacific.”
The aim of the Pacific campaign is to raise awareness in each country of the risks and safety measures which will protect people from online security risks. These risks include phishing scams, identity theft, ransomware, malware, viruses and other online threats. “The services are fully funded and don’t require any resources from those who use them,” said Peter Davies, the Global Ambassador for Get Safe Online. “It’s an ambitious agenda, but with the benefit of our experiences and successes, we know it’s achievable.”
The Get Safe Online Pacific campaign also involves in-country Ambassadors and Advocates who publicly appear on behalf of Get Safe Online to ensure that the online safety issues facing each island country are addressed. These Advocates and Ambassadors have appeared on television talk shows, on radio, through online forums, in podcasts and in public. In this way, the messages for staying safe online are tailored to the needs and situations facing each of the island countries in which Get Safe Online Pacific operates.