Scots boys learn cyber-safety lessons
You’ll be hard-pressed to find a Scots College boy without a private social media site, after the school was visited by Australian cyber-safety expert Susan McLean.
McLean was a member of the Victoria Police for 27 years and is regarded as Australia’s foremost expert in cyber-safety.
She delivered two talks, to years 7 to 9 and 10 to 12, covering online privacy, cyber-bullying and legal issues.
It was important for students to know what to do when they ran into issues online, including what behaviour could get them in legal trouble, and what was worth reporting to police.
McLean said there should be zero-tolerance to cyber-bullying, and that an adult and the police should be informed immediately.
Year 10 student Matt Harford, 14, said McLean mentioned things that hadn’t crossed his mind.
‘‘Another really good point she got across was just because you may be tolerant of something and you may not think it’s a big deal, that person may continue and go on to harm someone who is less tolerant.’’
Year 12 student Jack Mexted, 16, said the talk delivered some harsh realities.
‘‘Because just knowing what people may do, right here, right now, without thinking about it, could cost you a lot later on in life.
‘‘It’s really significant. She said she didn’t want to sugar coat it.’’
The students were planning on increasing their online security, particularly on social media.
SUSAN MCLEAN’S TOP TIPS FOR PARENTS
Be aware, be educated and be involved. Knowledge is power.
Know where your kids go online and who they talk to.
Social Media sites have age restrictions. Help your children obey them. Do not enable them to lie.
Help them to use all the safety and security settings the site has.
Let them know they can come to you no matter what.
Set clear rules about tech use, including no devices in bedrooms.
Know their passwords and passcodes. Don’t stalk!
Be prepared to discuss sensitive issues such as pornography and sexting. If you don’t they will look online.
Embrace technology for the benefits rather than focus on the negatives. It is here to stay.
Cyber-safety expert Susan McLean.