In summary

  • This year, the ‘Make it, Break it’ four day design sprint innovation challenge addressed the widespread threat of cyber fraud
  • Swinburne students from various disciplines came together for this masterclass to learn from industry experts
  • Students began the sprint knowing little about the impact of cyber fraud, and left with their own innovative solution

The four-day ‘Make it, Break it’ design sprint brought together Swinburne University of Technology students from various disciplines to help Australians understand they are at risk from cyber fraud.

‘Make it, Break it’ is a collaboration between Swinburne, leading financial experts Netwealth, and specialist design agency Studio MASS. The opportunity is offered to any Swinburne students who wish to participate, and is a core industry experience for students enrolled in Swinburne’s new Bachelor of Applied Innovation.

It trains the next generation of innovative thinkers using hands-on learning that dives into real-world challenges. As well as gaining a deep understanding of the important issue of cyber fraud, Netwealth Joint Managing Director, Matt Heine said students left the sprint with new industry knowledge and skills to equip them in their future careers.

The challenge

“With Australians connecting to the internet at work, school and home, the opportunities for greater collaboration, improved learning, new services and more frictionless transactions are endless,” Heine said.

“However, with the proliferation of the internet into all aspects of our lives there are a multitude of bad actors and threats continuing to emerge with hacking, cyber fraud and other villainous influences constantly on the rise. 

“A focus on Cybersecurity helps keep these risks at bay,  and solutions in this area must keep innovating to stay ahead of the negative social and personal impacts and the disruption and hardship it can cause to our daily lives and business.”

A panel of experts from Netwealth donated their time to help students understand the depths of cyber fraud and its impact. From these insights, each student team developed a targeted direction that they pursued for the next three days.

The process

Swinburne Alumn Tim Kotsiakos and his team from Studio MASS use Google Venture’s Design Sprint Methodology to immerse students in the creative problem-solving process, with help from innovation and design experts from Swinburne’s School of Design and Architecture, and Design Factory Melbourne.

“Students, mostly unknown to each other, unite around a problem or issue to solve,” Swinburne Associate Dean Education Nicki Wragg said.

“Together, they construct meaning and language, to resolve the challenge in a way where every team member is heard and actively involved.”

Students from media, engineering, science, design, business, criminology, and more, worked in multidisciplinary teams. Their solutions included an education website for children, a software proposal to make it easier to identify scam sites, an educational but entertaining Facebook account for those over fifty, and a guerrilla print campaign.

One solution gamifies learning for a Gen Z audience in a competitive app called ‘Scammit’. The app would allow players to make ‘scams’ to appear in fellow players’ social media feeds. The goal would be to avoid the scams sent from others while creating successful ones yourself. The app would make users vigilant and teach them first-hand about the tactics scammers employ.

The ‘Scammit’ game concept was created by Genie Boonpienpol, Ryan Mugnier, Samuel Nania, Sharon Hsu, Poojaben Dalwadi and Jun Yang Mah

The impact

Students left the masterclass with a three-fold benefit. Firstly, they gained new understanding of cyber fraud, straight from those with industry knowledge. Secondly, they had intensive hands-on learning on creation and innovation, which they are now able to apply to future challenges. Lastly, everyone left with new connections, both with industry and across disciplines within their university.

“The experience gives students a mixture of practical techniques and industry experience that they can apply to their studies and future careers,” Kotsiakos said.

“But most importantly, we hope that the program gets them to think differently about design and how design thinking can be used by multi-disciplinary teams."

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