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The CyberFirst Programme

The CyberFirst Programme is a collaboration between NCSC, QA and The SmallPeice Trust - is a pivotal part of the UK Government’s National Cyber Security Programme.

It aims to give talented young people the support, skills, experience and exposure they need to become ‘Cyberists’ of the future.


Through CyberFirst, QA successfully designs and delivers engaging and inspiring project-based Cyber Security education programmes for 11-18 year old school students nationwide; engaging with schools, parents, education and industry partners to ‘demystify’ technology and Cyber and encourage young people into STEM subjects and Cyber-related careers and opportunities. Key to the programme are QA’s CyberFirst events which are held residentially at university campuses or on-site at secondary schools.

They incorporate many subjects including:

Networking and Communications

Operating Systems

Information Security and Assurance

Threats and Threat Actors

Open Source Intelligence

Computer Programming

Technical Security

Vulnerability Assessments

Penetration Testing

Find out more about CyberFirst

Each event incorporates an age appropriate Cyber Security curriculum with a particular focus on computer programming, networking, security and ethics. For the younger age-group, the events centre on ‘hands-on’ competitions.  We also run a ‘girls only’ competition to try to encourage more girls into tech.  They are delivered by QA Cyber Security, computer programming and computer networking SMEs working alongside university lecturers from a number of our partner academic institutions, as well as industry experts who provide guest sessions on key areas of interest.

The success of our delivery model for the Cyber Summer Events centres around this ability to draw upon our large pool of Cyber Security industry and academic partners to recruit lecturers, trainers and facilitators who create successful, bespoke Cyber Security education programmes in short timescales. Working alongside these experts from academia and industry we deliver high-energy, immersive programmes which are current, relevant, thought-provoking and fun.

Inspiring young Cyberists:

CyberFirst in the news