Kyla Guru 15, United States
Project: Bits N' Bytes Cybersecurity Education (BNBCE)
Basic Human Needs: Education, Safety
As early as elementary school, Kyla witnessed children’s irresponsible behavior on the Internet, including incidents of cyber bullying on those close to her. In 2016, this behavior attributed to identity theft of educators in her community. Driven by these experiences, and frustrated by the fact that 90% of cyber attacks were due to human error, she created Bits N' Bytes Cybersecurity Education (BNBCE). BNBCE’s goal is to educate and equip youth and seniors with the skills to use technology and the Internet securely. Through interactive lessons, videos, research-based blogs and community presentations, BNBCE spreads awareness about important issues surrounding cyber security. Just four months after BNBCE began, Kyla’s hometown saw a significant increase in student awareness about respect and safety on the Internet. Although her mission began in her community, Kyla has expanded BNBCE through partnerships with a United States Congressman, The National Coding Week and more. Working with Discovery Education, BNBCE is teaching digital literacy skills to more than 50 million students and 4.5 million educators worldwide. Last year, Kyla was selected as Stanford University’s she++ #include Fellow, and awarded the National Honor from the National Center for Women in Information Technology. Kyla will continue to expand her audience in January 2018, with the release of a book to which she contributed a chapter on student leadership. Kyla is currently working to establish an online platform integrated into everyday school curriculum for students starting at the age of five. She hopes that BNBCE spreads worldwide to help prevent the 1 million+ cyber attacks that occur on corporations and consumers daily in the United States alone.