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NUKU’ALOFA- APRIL 01,2021: 3.58PM(Nukualofa Times): The Online Tongan Website was official launched today at the MEIDECC’s Conference Room this morning. It was hosted by Mr. Siosaia Vaipuna (Diretor for CERT Tonga).The presence of the British High Commissioner –(designate to the Kingdom of Tonga) Her Excellency Lucy Joyce OBE was the guest of honor  in this event together with Chief Executive Officer Paula Ma’u of the MEIDECC(Ministry of Meterorology Energy Information Disaster Management Environment and Climate Change) other guests attended the events too and the Media .

The official launched of the Tongan Website was done by the Chief Executive Ofiiccer Paula Ma’u of the MEIDECC.

. The new website will beadministrated by Get Safe Online whose local partner in Tonga is the Ministry of Meteorology,Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communications (MEIDECC).Get Safe Online Pacific is a project of the UK-based organization Get Safe Online, which has been successfully promoting online safety in the United Kingdom for 14 years. For the past eight months, websites in English have been operating in nine Pacific Island countries who are members of the Commonwealth of Nations. The service is completely free to users.CEO for MEIDECC, Mr. Paula Ma’u said, the ministry was pleased to launch the English version of the website for Tonga back in August 2020 to assist in its endeavor to protect Tongan businesses and citizens online.

“We requested if it was possible to have these valuable content available in the Tongan language so that it can reach and be useful to a wider range of audience in Tonga and we are thankful that this request has materialized. We are also happy that the borderless nature of the Internet can be utilized to counter the risks of being online as Tongans who reside overseas can also access these information to keep themselves, their families and their businesses safe and secure online”.

 

“We’re thrilled to be launching these local language websites,” said Ms Jenny Thornton, Head of International Relations for Get Safe Online. “We see these sites as the natural evolution of our efforts to share online safety and security messages with the people of the Pacific. When we launched the local language version of the Rwanda website in Africa just before Christmas, we received an amazing response. We’re hoping for the same excitement here in the Pacific.”

The Get Safe Online websites provide simple, helpful tips on a wide range of online security issues. From password protection to ensuring that financial transactions are safe, the nine Pacific island websites have been extremely popular and are visited by a wide range of users  from business owners to students and fishermen. The launch of the Tongan language site is supported by the British High Commission in Tonga.“I welcome the new ‘Get Safe Online’ website, which aims to raise awareness in business and social communities of risks, and safety measures, which will protect people and business from online security risks, said the British High Commissioner-designate, Lucy Joyce.

 

“The service is fully funded and does not require any resources from the people who use them. Funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office’s Commonwealth Cybersecurity Programme, it will work with businesses and individuals to build awareness of cyber-security risks. Through doing so, it proudly seeks to uphold the core Commonwealth values and help to deliver on the 2018 Commonwealth Cyber Declaration (https://thecommonwealth.org/commonwealth-cyber-declaration). I took part in an online session on 27 February with the Tongan ‘Get Safe Online’ Ambassador Viliami Fusimalohi,which really helped me understand some of the key cyber risks, and how to protect ourselves online,” she added.

The regional Get Safe Online Pacific project has been funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office’s Cybersecurity Programme. Apart from its Rwanda operation, Get Safe Online has also been operating in various Caribbean island countries for more than a year.

The Pacific campaign aims to raise awareness about risks and safety measures which will protect people from online security risks in each country. These risks include phishing scams, identity theft, ransomware, malware, viruses and other online threats. “The services are fully funded and don’t require any resources from those who use them,” said Peter Davies, the Global Ambassador for Get Safe Online. “It’s an ambitious agenda, but with the benefit of our experiences and successes, we know it’s achievable.” Get Safe Online Pacific campaign also involves in-country Ambassadors and Advocates who publicly appear on behalf of Get Safe Online to ensure that the online safety issues facing each island country are addressed. These Advocates and Ambassadors have appeared on television talk shows, radio, through online forums, podcasts and in public. In this way, themessages for staying safe online are tailored to the needs and situations facing each of the island countries in which Get Safe Online Pacific operates. The new Get Safe Online Tongan Website can be accessed through this link: www.getsafeonline.to.

This event was also Zoom to Mr. Rob Harvmann the  Get Safe Online Ambassador Scheme Coordinator and Mr. Andrew Little Head of Partnerships and Policy for Get Safe Online

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