One Polygon: teaching cyber security in a virtual world

Who are One Polygon?

  • Established in 2016, One Polygon is currently based in Plymouth.
  • Vicktor Brelsford, founder of One Polygon, is a digital art technology graduate from the University of Plymouth and is currently running the company independently.
  • One Polygon’s expertise are in e-learning and immersive applications.

The challenge

One of the challenges students learning about cyber security face is visualising computer systems, in order to understand how to protect them. Elements such as IP addresses, routers and servers can be difficult to comprehend, therefore, One Polygon decided to step in. 

Through funding from The South West Creative Technology Network’s (SWCTN) Immersion Development Grant, facilitated by The Bridge with the University of Plymouth, One Polygon have developed an easy to understand, effective learning tool for cyber security students. The application is soon to be completed and introduced to students at the Plymouth based computer training school, Blue Screen IT.  

The application

One Polygon used the development grant to develop a threshold learning application which educates individuals on difficult to comprehend cyber concepts. The application places the user inside a virtual environment, which enables the user to make connections within software subsystems and identify vulnerabilities within those systems through interaction. 

As a result, the user will not only learn key concepts of cyber security, they will also develop an understanding of how to visualize any problems within a network system. This means that after their training they will be able to effectively resolve and prevent cyber security issues.

“The aim was to be able to show what attacks were happening, where they were happening, did they have anti-virus software? Did the attack come from a malware attack? Email phishing? We wanted to take the traditional methods of teaching cyber security from the mundane and dull to an immersive space so that now you can visualize a whole network right in front of you, you can identify threats or when something is being attacked you can isolate that and look into it a bit deeper.” 

Vicktor Brelsford, Managing Director, One Polygon.

Building a business in the South West

Starting an immersive technology company in the South West doesn’t come without challenges; gaining recognition outside of larger cities such as Bristol and London being one of the largest hurdles a new company can face. However, One Polygon believes that the digital community in this area is one of the key benefits of building an immersive technology company in the South West.

“When you’re working in the digital sector, community is really important. That’s why I’m so grateful to be working in Plymouth because there’s a really good digital community down here. Plymouth really feels like it’s one big digital community whereas in places like Bristol and London I’m sure there are still those communities but they’re in more smaller packets.” - Vicktor Brelsford

The benefits of the SWCTN Development Grant

Because of the SWCTN development grant, One Polygon were able to develop their project which had been the topic of discussion for a number of years. On top of this, One Polygon take pride in the fact they are now able to say they were awarded the grant.

“Being a part of the SWCTN program is another phenomenal aspect, I can now say I was one of the people who received the SWCTN grant. In terms of immersive programs, it has been well heard of and comes with a lot of recognition.” - Vicktor Brelsford

Working with the University of Plymouth

One Polygon has worked with the University of Plymouth on multiple projects since the company’s origin in 2016. One Polygon believe the academic’s wealth of knowledge in specialised subjects is one of the key benefits of collaborating with the University, as they are able to use that knowledge to enhance their company’s own expertise. One Polygon also offers university students work experience and placements which offers students an insight into the exciting opportunities which lay ahead after graduation.

About the SWCTN

A £6.5 million project designed to drive the growth of the regional creative economy. The SWCTN brings together universities and industrial partners; pooling their research and innovation expertise to develop cutting-edge practices, techniques and products in creative digital technologies. Find out more about the SWCTN.