The Role of Digital Literacy in Raising Cybersecurity Awareness

January 19, 2022 2:14 am || By

Faizatush Sholikhah, S.Sos.,M.A. (
Head of Archives and Records Management Program Study Vocational School UGM

The development of information and communication technology affects nearly all lives. Internet use in Indonesia has increased every year over the past decades. Referring to the 2019-2020 APJII Internet Survey Report, it can be seen that the numbers of internet users at all levels of society continues to grow from the total 266,91 million people living in Indonesia, 196.71     million or 73,7% are internet users (APJII Survey Report, 2020). While these numbers are impressive, this e-community still lacks digital literacy skills. Digital literacy is an essential component of the United Nation Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and support Bureaucratic Reform in the country. The Indonesian Ministry of Communications and Informatics, especially the Directorate General of  Informatic Application (APTIKA), has initiated supporting programs in the National Digital Literacy Movement ( Some of the programs are related to digital media security, digital media culture, digital skills, and digital media ethics ( 

The establishment of a sound digital culture is one of the big goals of various programs implemented by the Indonesian government in order to increase digital literacy. The public is expected to understand the importance of digital literacy, starting with the protection of personal data. People interacting with data exchange and circulation meet again in face-to-face settings, which means their online activities have consequences in “real life”. They use various platforms that give them access too various activities relating to education, economic exchange and other sectors.

Inevitably, all levels of society are gradually producing increasing amounts of digital data, while often not being able to directly “control” the conditions of storage and use of this information as time moves on. For instance, in the education sector, face-to-face meetings require lecturers and students to use various digital platforms to support distance learning activities. Various platforms for videoconferencing such as Zoom and Google Meet, or platforms created independently by educational institutions themselves are the foundation for exchanging data and information on learning and teaching activities. In the economics and social sectors, most people are forced to Work From Home (WFH) or Shop From Home (SFH) during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Therefore, all their business transaction needs, such as buying and selling, banking, and public entertainment activities, are impossible without the support of various digital platforms. All of these digital platforms require some data and information to be shared to access these platforms.

Understanding personal data and protecting personal information is the basis for community transformation to adapt to digital culture: ”Digital literacy is the ability to access, manage, understand, integrate, communicate, evaluate and create information safely and appropriately through digital technologies for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship. It includes competences that are variously referred to as computer literacy, ICT literacy, information literacy and media literacy” (Nancy Law dkk, 2018). One of the problems is the lack of concern for internet users to improve digital skills, leading to various problems related to data misuse, data leakage, or related cybercrimes. People understand and see the importance of protecting physical assets and property, but they are not fully aware of the vulnerabilities of their digital assets and the need for protective measures (Moallem, 2019). We are encountering novel cases of misuse of data and cybercrime threats. Accordingly, threats to cybersecurity such as hacking, Denial of Services attacks (DoS), viruses, phising, spam, or theft of personal information, and ransomware attacks, require improving cybercrime awareness, and resilience. This is a task for government as well as the users to adopt their behavior and develop more self-awareness.

Increasing digital literacy has become the consideration of central government. Its implemented by the Indonesian Law number, 19 the Year 2016 about Information And Electronic Transactions and Law number 14, the Year 2008 about Public Information Disclosure, the management and protection of data and information in electronic transactions and access to public information. Based on the Act law, there are some points that becoming concerns which the Government give security and legal certainty. Increasing digital literacy is carried out for all levels of society. Public officials also need digital literacy to increase efficiency and transparency in their duties (Young, 2016). Digital literacy is also needed in bureaucratic reform as a strategic effort to prevent collusion, corruption, and nepotism practices to form good governance (Primanto Aji dkk, 2014). Various efforts to boost cybersecurity awareness can be carried out in collaboration between multi-stakeholders, such as the Central, Provincial and Regional Governments, practitioners, the education sector, or even individuals. Collaboration may also be taking place at international level. It is essential to advance digital literacy while adapting to every development in the technology and information to increase personal data protection and privacy.      

Data/ Information Privacy

Technology presents new opportunities and new challenges. The pace and the intensity of technological advancement—our ability to create, store, use and share mass amounts of digital information and data—are really at the heart of some of the biggest challenges concerning privacy and access to information today. We’ve moved from a paper-based system to an era where most records are “born digital” (Review the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, July 21, 2015, page 19).

Privacy of data or information is one way to increase awareness in cyber security, as an example of consideration before sharing photos or information on social media. The choice of visibility of the content that we share is whether it is public or limited to close friends, friends, or inaccessible for some people who are blocked from friendship are several ways of protecting someone’s privacy on social media. Some time ago, Netflix, a streaming device that allowed the public to access selected films or television shows on a subscription basis. One interesting case is a movie entitled the Squid Game, a South Korean television series directed and written by Hwang Dong-Hyuk, which has garnered much attention from the public worldwide. Squid Game’s storyline is somewhat related to the use of data and information. Later on, the data owner determines targets and selects participants who will compete in the Squid Game. How the power of information, by looking at a person’s data and information ranging from personal identity to the number of assets and liabilities, and personal and workplace problems, made the Squid Game organizers succeed in capturing 456 participants who had a background in economic and life problems. “Digital” psychology plays a role here to see the participant’s decision to continue the game or choose to stop when offered to stop the game at the beginning of the game. Personal data and information from the players become an archive owned by the organizers, which unfortunately also happens in our everyday lives. We either consciously or unconsciously submit personal data or information when we use an application or digital platform or storage media such as drives. In the Cloud, for example, Google Drive or Dropbox uses a data-sharing system in our data storage. The data or information owner has the “authority” in determining or knowing the movement of a person’s life in various sectors.

Copyright and licences

At the same time, various amenities in creating and uploading digital content have also encouraged understanding of copyright and licenses for data, information, and digital content and the principle of ownership of the creator or the originality of a work. Turban et al. (2011) show the complexity of relationships in social networking, including legal risks, security and privacy risks, intellectual property and copyright risks, labor risks, and other risks.


Abbas Moallem, 2019, Cybersecurity awareness among student and faculty, New York: CRC Press Taylor & Francis Group.

Nancy Law, David Woo, Jimmy de la Torre and Gary Wong, “A Global Framework of Reference on Digital Literacy Skills for Indicator 4.4.2”, dalam Information Paper No 51 June 2018, Unesco.

Laporan Survey Internet APJII 2019-2020

Purwanto Aji, dkk. “Bureaucratic Reform A way to eliminate Corruption, Collusion and Nepotism Practices in Indonesia”, International Journal of Economic, Commerce, and Management, Vol II, Issue 10 Oct 2014

Turban E, Bolloju N., and Liang T.P. (2011):”Enterprise social networking: Opportunities, adoption and Risk Mitigation,” Journal of Organisational Computing and Electronic Commerce, 21, 202-220.


OIPC Commissioner’s Briefing: Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act – Hansard, Special Committee to Review the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, July 21, 2015, page 19.

Anonymous, web literasi digital Infografis Literasi digital, retrieved from, 9 October 2021