Wickenburg news you need to know !
& INTERNET SAFETY
Phoenix, Arizona: For many of our
kids, summer means more time to surf the Internet. While the Web is a great resource that has
many interesting, fun and educational sites, it also has dark corners that can expose children to serious dangers. The explosive growth of
Internet chat rooms increases the chance our kids will be in contact
with strangers who mean them harm.June is Internet Safety month. Recently,
the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and Cox
Communications released a highly
disturbing survey of youth between 13 and 17 years old about their use
of the Internet:
* 14 percent of the children questioned have had
with people they met on the
Internet. Even one teen meeting a stranger
is one too many.
* 30 percent said they have considered meeting someone face-to-face
who they know only through the Internet.
* 71 percent reported receiving
messages online from someone they
* 45 percent said they have been asked for personal information.
Many young people have a false sense
of security on the Internet. They often think that because they use a chat room nickname,
people they chat
with won't know who they are. Not true. It is easy to find a person's
name, address, school and personal data from
June is Internet Safety Month, and it's our job as parents to educate
our children about the risks. My Web site has a Kids Page
that provides age-appropriate information for young
people that will help them use the Web safely. On completion of our online,
age-appropriate tutorial, your
son or daughter can print out a "license" to drive on the information
Some simple tips for parents:
* Create house rules. Create simple, easy-to-read house
using the Internet and post them on or near the monitor. Enforce these
* Consider security software for your computers. Most Internet
Service Providers offer security software at no additional charge.
* Create passwords. Internet accounts should be
in a parent's name,
with an adult having the primary screen name, controlling passwords and
using blocking and/or filtering devices.
* Don't be afraid to ask. Ask your children to show you their
favorite Web site and chat rooms. Know with whom your children are
exchanging e-mails and chatting.
* Understand the lingo. Instant messaging has its own language - for
example, KOL means kiss on lips; A/S/L? means age, sex, location?; P911
means parent approaching; and POS is parent over shoulder. These are
just a few examples of IM shorthand.
* Stay alert for warning signs. Be suspicious if your child minimizes
the screen when you walk into the room. Be alert to any indication that
your child does not want you to know what's going on online.
If you are concerned about a disturbing email, you can report it to my
office (www.azag.gov) or to the National
Center for Missing & Exploited
Another useful Web site is
www.commonsensemedia.org. This nonprofit
site is dedicated to improving the media and entertainment lives of kids
You can learn much more about Internet Safety on the Attorney General's
Web site (www.azag.gov/children_family/netsafety.html).