Internet Safety - ScoutHelp

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It is important that you stay safe on the Internet there are many harmful websites out there with nasty information and pictures.

There are many different parental control packages out there! Some of them are easy to bypass but don=t because they are there to protect you! If you are caught by the police looking at some sites your mum and dad can be arrested and taken to prison, this means you will have to go into a care home and you wont have any Internet access there.

What are the risks?

Exposure to Inappropriate Material

One risk is that you may be exposed to inappropriate material that is sexual, hateful, violent nature or encourages activities that are dangerous or illegal.

Physical Molestation

Although not very likely, there is a slight risk that, while online, you might provide information or arrange an encounter that could risk you safety or the safety of other family members.

Harassment

You might encounter E-mail, chat or bulletin board messages that are harassing, demeaning, or belligerent. This risk may not be life threatening, but it could affect a your self esteem and, frankly, it's pretty likely to occur for any child who engages in chat rooms or exchanges messages on bulletin boards.

Legal and Financial

There is also the risk that you could do something that has negative legal or financial consequences such as giving out a parent s credit card or doing something that violates another person s rights. Legal issues aside, you should be taught good "netiquette" and to behave online as they would in public and to avoid being rude, mean or inconsiderate.

Passwords:

You should also be cautioned to never give out their Internet or AOL password to anyone even if the person claims to work for AOL or an Internet service provider. When in doubt, you should ask their parents and parents should know their provider=s policy regarding passwords (AOL staff, for example, will never ask a member for their password)

Privacy

You have a right to privacy. Everything about you: you name, age, what school you go to, is your business and the business of your family. No one, including reputable companies, have a right to extract this information from you without first checking with the your parents.

Drugs, Alcohol, Tobacco and other Dangers

Some web sites and newsgroups contain information that advocates the use of drugs, tobacco or alcohol. It's even possible to find places on the Internet where you can learn to make bombs or obtain weapons. We don't know of any cases where a child has committed an act of violence or used a substance as a result of going online. If that happens, it's most likely related to something else going on in the child's life. Yet, with a rescue as vast and as uncontrolled as the Internet, you're bound to find all sorts of information.

Gambling and Other Inappropriate Behaviours

There are sites that allow you to gamble for money they will get you hocked then make you give you mum or dad credit card details to pay for it.

Guidelines

safekids.com suggest that children should follow the follow the following guidelines, I think that they are good and that they should be followed but its up to you and your parents.

I will not give out personal information such as my address, telephone number, parents work address/telephone number, or the name and location of my school without my parents permission.

I will tell my parents right away if I come across any information that makes me feel uncomfortable.

I will never agree to get together with someone I "meet" online without first checking with my parents. If my parents agree to the meeting, I will be sure that it is in a public place and bring my mother or father along.

I will never send a person my picture or anything else without first checking with my parents.

I will not respond to any messages that are mean or in any way make me feel uncomfortable. It is not my fault if I get a message like that. If I do I will tell my parents right away so that they can contact the service provider.

I will talk with my parents so that we can set up rules for going online. We will decide upon the time of day that I can be online, the length of time I can be online, and appropriate areas for me to visit. I will not access other areas or break these rules without their permission.

I will not give out my Internet password to anyone (even my best friends) other than my parents.

I will be a good online citizen and not do anything that hurts other people or is against the law.