Safer Internet Day (SID) is celebrated today, February 11, for the 17th year with the motto “Together for a better internet.”
SID started in 2004 as an initiative of the EU SafeBorders project and was then taken up in 2005 by Insafe, a European network that aims to raise awareness for a better internet through educational campaigns, a helpline, and youth projects.
Safer Internet Day has grown beyond its traditional geographic zone and is now celebrated in approximately 150 countries worldwide.
To mark the day, the Cyprus Police released the following advice to the public on how to use the internet safely.
ADVICE TO PARENTS
• Teach your children that what they read or see on the Internet is not always true and encourage them to ask if they have doubts
• Check your child’s activity on the Internet using advanced Internet software. Parental controls can help you filter out dangerous content, record locations your child visits, and find out what they do there
• Always connect to the Internet together with your children if they are under 14
• Add approved sites to your favourites to create a personalised online environment for your children
• Use software that blocks pop-ups
• It is preferable for computers to be in the common areas of the home rather than in the children’s bedroom, in order to exercise the necessary control. This measure prompts minors to feel supervised.
• Parents should be aware that when children use communication tools like instant messaging applications or e-mails, they run the risk of contacting an online perpetrator.
• Apply email filters
• Children should be encouraged to inform their parents if they spot anything unusual online, and advise them to never share personal information or revealing photographs
• Children should be aware that if someone starts asking them sexually explicit questions on the Internet or requests confidential information, then they should stop communicating with that person and inform their parents of the incident
ADVICE TO ALL INTERNET USERS
- Never give strangers your home address, phone number or other personal information
- Never reveal details of your ID, bank account or credit card
- Never set up meetings in person with people you met online if you have doubts about their intentions
- Web cameras should be switched off or covered when not in use to prevent unauthorised access to hackers
The police have also announced the launching of a new portal available in English dedicated to cybercrime prevention, inviting the public to use it for informational purposes.
The Office for Combating Cybercrime (OCC) is open seven days a week, including national holidays, from 7 am to 7 pm and can be reached on 22-808200. A complaint can also be filed electronically by submitting this form.
You can click here for Europol’s guide on cybercrime prevention measures, and watch below the video posted by SID on social media to mark the day:
This Tuesday, 11 February 2020, for #SaferInternetDay, we’ll be millions, joining forces all around the globe, “Together for a better internet”! Will you be one of us? Find out how you can join the movement at https://t.co/4uJi0OixGQ pic.twitter.com/FLspGkcD1y
— Safer Internet Day (@safeinternetday) January 27, 2020