In years past, a child left alone in his or her room was deemed by parents to be safe. Today, however, parents do not have that assurance. A child at home on the computer can fall victim to a predator. The Internet can be an asset for information gathering, but it can also be a source of danger.
A popular pastime for young people is to create personal profiles and post them on social-networking and blog sites. Your child may claim this is an innocent hobby, but some young people may be providing too much information in their profiles. Just as you safeguard your own personal information, you should teach your children to protect theirs. Instruct them to never give out personal data that would allow an online predator to track them down. If your child wants to take part in these online sites, agree to it only if the child will let you monitor what is being listed in the profile.
If the cyber world is confusing for you, there is an organization you can turn to for information and advice. Wired Kids and the WiredSafety Group (www.wiredsafety.org) are experts in Internet and digital safety, privacy and security – wired, wireless and mobile. Run by thousands of unpaid volunteers from all walks of life, the WiredSafety Group can respond to inquiries about actual cases of cyber crime, Internet sexual predators, cyber security, Internet privacy and all aspects of cyber law. They cover adults, children, teens, college students and senior citizens, and work one-to-one cases of cyber stalking, cyber bullying, child sexual exploitation and security attacks.
Founded by author and cyberspace attorney Ms. Parry Aftab, a leader in Internet safety, WiredSafety Group is the largest and most experienced organization of its kind in the world. “Schools are the most important link in teaching students to use the digital technologies safely and responsibly. We have never needed their help in educating parents and students more than we do now. WiredSafety is committed to sharing our expertise and our help with any school that needs it. Together we can build a safer cyber world for all our kids,” says Ms. Aftab.