Posted 22 March, 2013 by Christopher Wilson

How to Train Digital Security Trainers

Good digital security practices and understanding of how to assess risk are key components of advocacy work. But digital security is a complex and quickly evolving field — people spend years and entire careers developing digital security skills. How can advocates learn to protect themselves from digital threats without losing focus on their advocacy work?  That is where digital security trainers come in. But, who trains digital security trainers?

Demand for digital security trainers is high, and is trending even higher. To support development of the digital security training network, and grow the number of knowledgeable trainers working with advocates, several organizations have developed training of trainers  (TOT) for digital security work.

We have been conducting a qualitative study on trends in digital security to ask what makes a great TOT. How important are participant backgrounds in training or their technical skills? What difference do trainers’ pedagogical approaches make? How important are structure, follow-up or group composition? What works well? What could work better?

We are almost finished with interviewing TOT participants and trainers, and are excited about what we are learning. We are equally excited about sharing the outputs widely. Part of our mandate is to figure out how support like TOTs can be as efficient as possible, and we have worked hard to structure this research in a way that will provide concrete and actionable information. At the end of the day, we hope it will be useful for organizations that run TOTs on digital security, to help them adapt and develop their approaches.

This research is supported by Internews through both private and public funds. We will be releasing the white paper in the coming months. More soon!

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