Safer Internet Day in 2012 will be held on Tuesday 7 February. The theme ‘Connecting generations and educating each other’ will be used to encourage schools children teachers, parents and families to learn and connect together.
NCC’s key messages for schools, children parents and families are:
• Talk about online safety—with all members of your family and school community
• Protect Your Privacy—check your privacy settings and update your software
• Educate yourself about the online world—check out the safetech resources
Visit our Safetech Website
The Internet has great potential for good, but it has also provided predators with almost unhindered access to teens, and provides them with the anonymity they need.
There are people online who deliberately target teens and purposely expose them to inappropriate, even criminal, material and activities.
Through the Internet, kids are often tricked or manipulated to look at pornography, join gangs, commit crimes, leave home, engage in sexual acts with adults, and more.
Kids on the internet are in the driver’s seat and have all the control.
They are technologically savvy (far beyond their parents and teachers) but have little wisdom about good boundaries.
They are in Need for safety from:
• Cyber bullying
• Psychological harm
• Content Risks
• Technology overload
Obstacles to safety on the internet:
Most parents do not talk to their children about Internet Safety for 3 reasons:
• Lack of Knowledge
Some parents are uninformed about the Internet and its safety hazards
Some parents do not want to admit that their child could be endangered by their poor Internet habits
Some parents feel uncomfortable or awkward talking about Internet safety to their child
So most parent provides no rules at all to govern a child’s use of the Internet, or
provides inconsistent rules (rules exist but are rarely enforced), or they creates all the rules - this deprives the child of the opportunity to formulate his own internal safety standards. Child may forget or rebel against parent’s rules.
What can we do to protect children from online predators?
We CANNOT rely solely on parents to protect their children;
We CANNOT rely solely on law enforcement to prevent Internet crime;
We CANNOT rely solely on educators to teach our children Internet safety
We CAN train children to be aware of Internet safety issues so that they can serve as their own first line of defense.
What Parents Can Do-
• Parents should know ALL user names & passwords
• Apply program settings based on appropriate age levels, Cybersitter or Cyber Patrol
• Keep computers in a central family location
• Teach children to respect their online identity and Never agree to meet someone offline.
Teenagers need to learn:
• that they are vulnerable to predators, even if they feel invincible
• How dangerous it is to post personal information and photos online
• how to remain as anonymous as possible when using the Internet to avoid endangering themselves
• how to recognize and repel the advances of a predator
• what to do and who to talk to if they feel they have been approached by a stranger online
• that it is NEVER a good idea to meet in person someone they have “gotten to know” online
* To prepare our children to live in a world of constant change and immediate information.
* Teach them Netiquette so they can be as safe as possible when alone.
* To engage our children in conversations that will help them be good digital citizens.
Visit our Safetech website Safe tech –Connect Educate Protect to find some educational resources on online –safety for more advice for parents, students and employers in the workplace.
Educational resources which explores:
1. Exploitation and misinformation;
Students are encouraged to consider:
• That the Internet is a collection of uncontrolled and unregulated components. That some Internet content is unsafe, misleading and illegal, for example;
o Racist content
o Terrorist propaganda
o Dangerous content
o Some chat rooms, particularly those where sexual predators may operate
o Gambling sites, particularly those operating outside regulatory authorities
• That e-mail correspondence with an unknown third party can be hazardous
• That unregulated Internet sites can operate fraudulent financial schemes
• That ‘user-share’ sites such as face book and High 5 can breach privacy rules. Users can find their images and personal data misused and misrepresented.
Students are presented with the facts concerning current legislation both in Seychelles and overseas. They are advised regarding possible future legislation and how this might affect them and their families.
3. In the work place
Students are given information regarding Safe Technology practice in the work place, so that they can be mindful of their responsibilities in this respect when on work experience or when they have completed their education and are at work. To this end students are encouraged to consider the following;
• Policies and legislation, actual and pending, which regulate how employees use technology whilst at work.
• The fact that a worker abusing technology whilst at work is liable to be dismissed and prosecuted.
4. In the school
Students are encouraged to see the school in the same light as the potential place of work. All of the topics considered within the employment context are transferable to the school. Additionally students are informed of their school’s policy and rules regarding the use of technology.