In 2004, Impact! Technologies owner Troy Brazile attended a Internet Safety for Kids ‘train the trainer’ workshop at an HP technical conference. “I always felt the calling to present this information, but I never really had the time or opportunity” said Troy. “Once I launched Impact, I knew that I wanted to give back to the community, and this seemed like a great place to start. “
Most of the seminars we have attended and materials we have found have tended to be more descriptive (describing how predators operate, providing information on how children are groomed, etc). I am attempting to put together a ‘prescriptive’ solution to the problem, and provide parents who may not be technical a “starting place”. A place where they can understand the risk, some simple steps they can take, and an opportunity to learn and grow more internet savvy. Besides the seminars (which we hope to tweak and repeat on a regular basis), I will be using this space for an ongoing conversation about new technologies, new preventative measures, great resource sites and more detailed ‘how tos’ that build on what we discuss in the seminars.
If you have any comments or feedback, please send your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org. This is intended to be the community’s space, and I want to hear your ideas, stories, thoughts and comments as we strive to educate each other.
- InternetSafety.org’s Youth Pledge - This is a GREAT document that you can use as a starting place to have discussions with your children regarding Internet best practices and safe online behavior. Highly recommended!
- Rules ‘N Tools Checklist – A checklist to consider to ensure you are addressing all aspects of a safe computing environment. Helps parents to focus on the positives of Internet use while teaching children about the dangers and making wise decisions.
- OpenDNS Family Shield – The Domain Name System (or DNS) is like the Internet ‘White Pages’. When you type a name, click a link, etc, your assigned DNS servers direct you to where you want to go. OpenDNS provides a FREE DNS service that removes the most common adult sites, so if your kids find them in Google, mistype an address, get a virus, etc, they get a ‘page not found’ instead of the site you don’t want them on. There are new sites daily, so you cannot be 100% safe, but this is a highly recommended free solution to start addressing the problem!
- A Parent’s Guide to Facebook – Required reading for understanding the ever-changing landscape of Facebook privacy and security. A resource of ConnectSafely.org!
- Netlingo.com – The largest list of text and chat acronyms to help parents understand their kids’ text and chat messages.
- NetSmartz.org – This site is sponsored by the Center for Missing and Exploited Children. They cover a wide range of topics, and provide great cyber-bullying and cell phone guidelines for taking to your children (along with TONS more).
- Arkansas Crime Information Center Sex Offender Registry – Know your neighbors! Identify persons at risk to commit crimes against children using this free look-up service.