1. Always ask your parents' permission before using your full name, address, telephone number or school name anywhere on the Internet.
2. Always tell your parents or guardian if you see something online that you know is wrong or that makes you feel uncomfortable.
3. Don't respond to messages that make you feel uncomfortable or uneasy.
4. Never give out a credit card number or password online.
5. Never send out your picture without your parents' permission.
6. Be careful when someone offers you something for nothing, such as gifts or money.
7. Don't ever accept a gift or an offer that involves having someone visit your house.
8. Never arrange to meet someone you've met online in person unless you discuss it with your parents and an adult goes with you.
9. Talk to your parents to set up rules for going online. Decide with them the best time of day to be online, the length of time to be online, and appropriate areas to visit.
10. Get to know your "online friends" just as you get to know all of your other friends. Be sure that you are dealing with someone that you and your parents know and trust before giving out any personal information about yourself via email.
Meeting People Online
The Rules of Internet Relationships
So how do you stay safe while still meeting people online? There are old rules and new rules you should strictly abide by. Some of these you’ve likely heard before, and with good reason. So here they are, the cardinal rules of online relationships…
· Unless you already know the person offline, always assume the person you are dealing with on the Internet is not who they claim to be and conduct yourself accordingly.
· Never give out personal information like last name, addresses, phone numbers, school names or where you work online.
· Never post provocative pictures of yourself or anybody else.
· If an online friend starts getting intimate with you or asks you sexually suggestive questions back off and ignore them in the future. If they persist, tell a parent or other trusted real world adult and report them to the site administrator.
· Never arrange to meet an Internet friend alone. If you must meet them do so in a very public and neutral place (like a mall food fair), bring along a few friends and TELL AN ADULT. (Ideally this adult will also go with you even if they hang back and don’t actually appear to be with you.)
· Once you’ve met an online friend never go anywhere private with them until you know them better, as well as you would expect to know a school friend before being alone, and have been out in public with them just about as often as you have your offline friends.
· Never arrange to travel great distances alone to see an online friend, even if you’ve already met face-to-face.
· Always tell your parents (or another trusted adult, like a teacher, aunt or uncle, social worker, or guardian) what you are up to, where you will be and when you will be back and don’t deviate from your plans without clearing it with them first.
· Never ask another person to lie for you so you can meet an online friend. If your meeting has to start with a lie it can’t possibly be good.
Surf Zombie or Cyber Smart?
When you surf the net do you do it in a daze or are you on top of your game?
"Online Safety" has become a catch phrase for the new millenium. Whether you are a teen or an adult you must be careful when you are online. It is back to school time and that is a good time to recap the basics of staying safe on the web.
Obey your parents rules, even if you think they are lame or silly. You have to trust that they are doing the right thing. Know that TRUST between you and your folks is the BEST protection you will ever have ~ on the internet AND in the real world!
NEVER give out:
· Your full name, your last name
· Your parents' full names, your friend's full names, your teacher's name
(If your teacher's name is Mrs. Jones, just call her "Mrs. J")
· Your home address
· The addresses of your friends or family
· Your phone number
· Your friends or family's phone numbers
· Your personal e-mail address or any address you are not sure is safe
(certain e-mail addresses are safe, more on this later)
· Anyone else's e-mail address
· The name of your city or town
· Your school name or address
· The names of any teams or clubs you belong to
· Any passwords you have or know
These things are safe give out:
· Your first name or a nickname that does not give away your last name
· The country you live in, or (at the most), the region in the country (like your home state or province)
· An e-mail address that your parents have screened for public use
(It is a good idea to get your parents to help you set up a secure e-mail address that you will know is safe to use ~ free e-mail accounts are good for this)
· Anything that does not divulge your offline identity and how to find you
NEVER ever put your picture on the Internet OR let somebody else put it on the Internet unless your parents say it is all right. Don't download any files on to the family computer without your parents help or permission.
NEVER, never ever agree to meet an online "friend" somewhere in the real world. Let your parents know if you want to meet someone and let them decide if it is safe and reasonable... then take them with you. This is THE ONLY safe way to do this!
Don't believe everything a person you meet on the Internet says about themselves. Think about how easy it is for you to "fake it" on line and remember it is just as easy for everybody else to do the same. Even if somebody says they are a peer, remember that they can very easily lie and don't be fooled.
If ANYBODY on the Internet says or does something that scares or bothers you, stop talking to them right a way, never talk to them again, and TELL YOUR PARENTS OR AN ADULT YOU TRUST RIGHT AWAY
If ANYBODY online threatens you, your family, or anybody else TELL YOUR PARENTS, THE WEBPAGE ADMINISTRATOR AND THE POLICE
Remember it is always better to be safe than to be sorry!