September 21 2017

Cybersecurity Expert and Author of 'Sexts, Texts and Selfies' to Speak at BHS About Children and Online Safety

By: BNEWS

Kids and teens spend a lot of time online and while most of it is for entertainment and interacting with friends, there are dangers of spending time on the internet.

Burlington Public Schools is trying to educate parents about some of the potentially dangerous sites and activities popular among some teens and younger children. They are holding a presentation featuring cybersecurity expert Susan McLean, author the best-selling book “Sexts Texts and Selfies – How to keep you Child Safe in the Digital Space,” that will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 4th in the Burlington High School Auditorium.

“Cybersafety is one of the most confronting issues for teachers, parents and of course students,” BHS Principal Mark Sullivan said in a blog post. “It is the number one non-academic problem that schools have to tackle, often on a daily basis. Whereas most of the inappropriate behavior occurs at home, schools are responsible for trying to sort out the mess when a student’s online behavior affects their relationships within the school community.”

Sullivan said that when online children today have access to and are accessible by millions of people via websites, applications and online games. Other identified dangers include exposure to inappropriate content, cyber bullying and harassment, ‘sexting’ and identity theft.

“Teens are often not aware that their words and or photos, which may have been intended for a small audience, sometimes find their way to a larger one, often with both the unexpected and undesirable consequences,” Sullivan said.

Sullivan said the McLean’s talk is suitable for parents of children of all ages and he recommends all parents attend.

“I strongly encourage your attendance at this very important evening,” he said. “As parents, you have a very important role to play in the minimizing of cyberbullying and harassing behaviors online and this presentation will assist you to develop CyberSafety measures for your own family to ensure that your children remain as safe as possible when using the fabulous technologies available to them.”

Some of the topics will include:

- Popular sites – What are they? (You probably know Facebook, Instagram & Snapchat, but what about Kik, Yellow, Happen, Secret Calculator or Houseparty?

 

- What do kids do online? Where do they go? The difference between an ‘online friend’ and a ‘stranger.’

 

- Online Grooming – What is it and when/how does it occur?

 

- Misuse of technology - legal consequences and the possible criminal charges. (What is cyber bullying and harassment?)

 

- ‘Sexting’ – the taking and sending of explicit images...what are the REAL consequences and possible criminal charges.

 

- Potential dangers and safety tips – how to assist the children in your care to stay safe online.

 

- Be confident in setting rules and boundaries around internet use in the  home

 

- Time for Questions.


 

 
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