Minister for Indigenous Affairs - Senator the Hon. Nigel Scullion
eSafety Commissioner - Julie Inman Grant
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians will now have access to an innovative new digital tool to support them in improving their digital literacy and protect their online safety.
The app, launched today by the Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, is funded by the Coalition Government through the Indigenous Advancement Strategy and is specifically designed for use in remote Indigenous communities.
“Remote communities are increasingly using online services as a way of connecting with friends and family across country and to support access to services. While there are many benefits to online connectivity, it’s critically important that people are aware of the risks and know how to protect themselves online,” Minister Scullion said.
“Today, on Safer Internet Day, I am pleased to announce the launch of the Your Online Journey app, created in partnership with Indigenous communities and the Office of the eSafety Commissioner - Julie Inman Grant.
“Increasingly, we are living in two worlds – community and a digital world. So much of our everyday activities are online or require the use of technology in one form or another,” Minister Scullion said.
“We are supporting Indigenous Australians in remote communities to build digital capacity and confidence online. The app will help people to safely access the opportunities the digital world provides, be it connecting with family, study, research, online shopping, banking or job seeking.
“The app shares how to safely use social media, manage your online footprint and how best to deal in the instance of online bullying. I’m pleased that early feedback from communities has been really positive about what this app will mean for them.”
eSafety Commissioner, Ms Julie Inman Grant, praised the benefits of the new app.
“We have worked in partnership with Indigenous communities of Koonibba and Yalata in SA and Hay in NSW, to develop this app as a fantastic tool to meet the specific needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians,” Ms Inman Grant said.
“Your Online Journey helps address the digital literacy and safety needs of remote Indigenous communities by providing straightforward and easy to understand information, including the fundamentals of using mobile devices and social media safely.”
The investment builds on the Government’s $3.6 million investment in new community internet access in over 70 remote Indigenous communities. This is in addition to more than $3 million a year for ongoing community-based internet and telephone services in remote Indigenous communities.
The app is free to download and is available now from app platforms the AppStore and Google Play and will be available on a number of other sites including the Office of the eSafety Commissioner website and Indigenous.gov.au.