The Department of Broadband Communications and the Digital Economy intends to survey school children, parents and teachers on e-security and cyber-safety threats from late July 2009.
Australians can expect to be contacted by a consultancy that will be hired by the department in the coming weeks, following a tender it released late last Friday.
Interviews with parents, teachers and students are expected to soak up 10 to 15 minutes of the interviewees' time over the coming months as it attempts to measure the threats that five to 17 year olds face on the internet.
Two surveys covering cyber-safety and e-security are intended to provide data on how children access the internet, for example, whether they are using schools, libraries, internet cafes, home or mobile phones. It will also look at children's exposure to privacy breaches, sexual or child abuse material, alcohol and drugs, malware threats and what protection measures are used.
The surveys coincide with the government's broader efforts to clean up the internet under its mandatory ISP filtering plans currently under examination. They will be carried out via so-called Computer Assisted Telephone Interviews.
The proposed sample size has yet to be determined, with bidders expected to provide recommendations. The department has also requested the survey instruments and methodology remain open for the department to repeat the survey with other consultants if necessary.
Communications Minister Stephen Conroy is delivering a keynote speech today on internet security at the Australian Computer Emergency Response Team's (AusCERT) annual security conference held on the Gold Coast, Queensland.
Liam Tung travelled to the Gold Coast as a guest of AusCERT.