Scots boys learn cyber-safety lessons

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - CHELSEA MCLAUGH­LIN

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.

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