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06.01.2016

Press Release

Protect Yourself Against Identity Theft: New Open Course on Social Media

Potsdam. The online learning platform of German Hasso Plattner Institute (HPI), openHPI, is beginning the new year with a two-week online workshop, “Social Media – What No One Has Told You about Privacy“. Starting on January 18th, participants find out what they need to pay attention to in managing their account so that their personal data doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. All who are interested can register at this link for the free course in English, being taught by computer scientist Dr. Anne Kayem: https://open.hpi.de/courses/ws-privacy2016. Here you will also find an overview of all 12 offers in this year’s new openHPI program.

“Whoever shares content over social media, for example Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Wikipedia, should be aware that he or she becomes interesting for companies who design a personality profile from the information, which they can then use for marketing purposes,” says Kayem. She coordinates the work at the HPI Research School at the University of Cape Town and is currently a guest scientist at Hasso Plattner Institute in Potsdam.

Institute director Prof. Christoph Meinel is delighted that the computer scientist from Cameroon is offering this Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) in the form of a workshop. “I also see the task of our institute to create awareness among the general public of how to move securely through the Internet, particularly in social networks,” says Meinel. He himself has already contributed online courses, for a broad German-speaking audience, on “Security in the Internet” and “Secure E-Mails”. It is now possible to register for Meinel’s updated security course, beginning on February 8, at: https://open.hpi.de/courses/intsec2016.

Starting on January 18th, the workshop on security in social media begins with a short introduction on the history of social media. Topics such as choosing a secure password and setting up access control are addressed. Further, the methods used by cyber criminals and examples of attacks are explained. “Even people who do not, or hardly ever, use the Internet are not immune to data abuse and identity theft,” warns Kayem. Therefore her course is recommended for everyone who wants to get advice on the topic of data protection.

Background of www.openHPI.de

openHPI has been offering its free open-access online courses on subjects of information technology since September 2012. In the meantime, at openHPI there have been over 235,000 course registrations from more than 107,000 users who come from around 150 countries. More than 30,000 certificates have already been issued for successful participation. All of the online courses that have been offered at the platform so far—in German, English, and Chinese—are also available anytime in the archive mode (without exam and certificate).

The Internet learning platform openHPI is unique worldwide with the concentration of its content on information technology and computer science and with its course offering in German, English, and Chinese. In contrast to “traditional“ lecture portals, courses at openHPI.de follow a fixed six-week syllabus with a defined set of educational content, such as instructional videos, texts, self-tests, regular homework and exam questions. These offerings are combined with a forum where participants have the opportunity to interact with course instructors and fellow learners, getting answers to questions and discussing topics in depth.

Profile of Hasso Plattner Institute

The Hasso Plattner Institute for Software Systems Engineering GmbH (HPI) at the University of Potsdam is Germany’s university excellence center for IT-Systems Engineering. HPI is the only university institution in Germany offering the Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in “IT-Systems Engineering”—a practical and engineering-oriented alternative to conventional computer science studies. Current enrollment is at approximately 480 students. The HPI School of Design Thinking is Europe’s first innovation school for university students. It is based on the Stanford model of the d.school and offers 240 places annually for a supplementary course of study. There are a total of twelve HPI professors and over 50 guest professors, lecturers and contracted teachers at the Institute. HPI carries out research noted for its high standard of excellence in its ten topic areas. Research work is also conducted at the Potsdam HPI Research School for PhD candidates and at its branches in Cape Town, Haifa and Nanjing. HPI teaching and research focuses on the foundation and application of large-scale, highly complex and distributed IT systems. The development and exploration of user-driven innovations for all sectors of life is an additional area of importance. HPI always earns the highest positions in the CHE university ranking. Since September 2012, HPI has provided an interactive Internet learning platform - openhpi.de. Its free open online courses are available to everyone.das jedem offen steht.