Mai 17, 2023

Digital for all: Why I’m happy to help as a digital mentor and digital first responder

Three out of five people in Germany want to participate more in digital life: That’s according to a recent survey by the digital association Bitkom. The desire is particularly strong among older people aged 75 and over (67%). But even among younger people between 16 and 29, more than half want more digital participation (55%). That’s the best reason to get involved. For over a year now, I have been volunteering both as an official Digital First Responder in the cyber security network of the Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) and as a Digital Mentor for the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg.

I regularly receive calls from small and medium-sized enterprises as well as private individuals who are concerned about IT security, data protection and some complicated issues with PCs and smartphones. We are able to resolve many of these issues in an initial conversation with self-help assistance – following clear checklists of what needs to be done first. Often, the contact continues beyond a few days or weeks to discuss further measures.

The success proves me right: The help arrives! And above all, it helps. It is precisely in the case of encryption of IT systems – so-called ransomware attacks – that nerves are on edge, operations come to a standstill and the need is great. Through structured initial measures and concrete assistance, I have been able to effectively support SMEs in a number of cases. In complex situations, a so-called incident manager of the BSI cyber security network can take further measures.

And my work as a digital mentor is also useful for everyday hurdles in dealing with PCs, smartphones and data clouds, whether on-site in neighbourhood assistance or weekly at fixed hotline times for those seeking help from all over Germany. This sometimes results in regular conversations. 

I myself have always received help when I asked for it and am happy to give back in this way, which can provide useful support to others in the digital future. 

Feel free to contact me:

Carsten Hennig
Digital First Responder of the BSI Cyber Security Network
Digital mentor
Mobile & all messengers: 0176 50326719


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Digital First Responder – Entry at BSI:

Insights from the Bitkom survey commissioned by the „Digital for All“ initiative (

  • 64% are concerned about the security of their own data
  • 38% find the use of digital devices and applications too complicated
  • 29% lack technical knowledge
  • 20% are afraid of doing something wrong
  • 22% do not know where to get support if they have questions or problems
  • 12% simply cannot afford to use the devices and applications
  • 2% have no interest in digital technologies and do without them

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