Cyber Safety Constable Maire Froud
Overview • Cyberspace • Contract • Setting Rules • Using Social networking sites • Cyber bullying
Setting Rules • Discuss with your partner what you’re happy with your child doing online and note this down. • Then meet with your child and discuss your ideas, including use of the Net, Cell phone and gaming consoles. • Try not to impose a lot of rules but to compromise so it works both ways.
2. Work out how to monitor use. • This may be to put the computer in the lounge; however it’s not always practical. Remembering they have access to internet multiple ways. • May mean more specific rules are required about what they do online and an agreement made for you to be able to check up on this.
3. Explain reason for having ground rules. • They may not understand the risks involved, discussing this will also help to open the lines of communication. • Relate the rules to already set ‘offline’ rules, such as not accepting a lift or a gift from a stranger or having a curfew.
4. Discuss the importance of alerting you to anything ‘bad’ they may come across online, even if it risks exposing themselves to going somewhere they shouldn’t have online. • Just as you warn them about bad people lurking on the streets, the same people are online.
5. If they do come across something accidentally they need to know they won’t be punished. • They need to be encouraged to talk about it.
6. Make it imperative that they never give out any personal information about themselves. Especially in the heat of the moment such as a chat room. Picture a party with 500 people or 2,000 people or 30,000 people Now add to the picture that the room is pitch black so you cannot see what anyone looks like, and voices are distorted so you cannot even tell if they are male or female. Welcome to a web chat-room
This is a truer picture of an Internet or txt chat room. You cannot be sure of anyone's identity.
7. Must never give out their password to anyone. • Including their boyfriend / girlfriend, brother / sister or friends.
8. Need to understand the gravity of meeting someone in person, including if they believe they’re the same age. • Discuss the difference of face to face communication compared with online. How easily the words can be misunderstood in online chat rooms, IM (instant messenger) or texts.
9. Set limits where money is involved. • Such as calls per month – help to teach them the need to budget. 10. Consider some form of filter software or setting on the computer. • Remembering these aren’t 100% fool proof.
11. Offline you get to meet your child’s friends. • Online this is difficult – encourage them to involve you in their online life so you know whom they’re talking to.
12. The limits may change if there are different age groups in the house. • As children get older, you need to build in regular ‘reviews’ of the agreement so you can discuss any new internet developments. • It also means anything that is frustrating your child in the agreement can be brought out into the open early, preventing them simply bypassing or working their way around it.
13. Keep yourself up to date with new technologies – what they do, how they work, and most importantly how kids are using them.
Using social networking sites • They are generally free and people have signed up to place a kind of personal Web page – called a ‘unique personal profile’. • People can meet other people in cyberspace and become cyber buddies.
Your personal page generally includes photos and this in turn can lead to pressure to put up more risqué pictures which attract more hits. • The juvenile spirit often pushes the limits as part of their feeling of freedom. • It’s important they understand that anything placed online can never be removed and can be used by anyone – including the media and employers.
The rules are that people must be aged 14 or older, but there is no requirement to prove this, they can simply enter a supposed birth date. • It’s really important to know what your child is signed up to and what sort of photos and information they are sharing online. • As we are now all sadly aware – these sites are very fashionable with predators to meet victims.
Cyber Bullying • Cyber Bullying is when a person is tormented, harassed, humiliated, or otherwise embarrassed by another person on the internet, or on an interactive game when you have to communicate with others, or using any technology. • It is with you all the time – you can’t get away from a phone or a computer.
How to deal with it: • Talk! • School Councilor or net safe 0508 NETSAFE • Report to the phone provider • Report abuse to online site • Police
Video Games • Boys need a vent for their testosterone, however be aware of what games and make a decision on what you deem to be appropriate. • Bullying is common on these games and can get nasty – again, reporting to the game site is effective. • Also be aware that gaming is very addictive and people lose track of time.