New Zealand ISP TelstraClear has joined with an international e-learning expert and cyber safety advocate to launch a program to assist parents in ensuring their children are less vulnerable while online.
To play its part in keeping kids safe online TelstraClear has also introduced a new access policy for its ISP customers, filtering access to child sex abuse sites.
According to TelstraClear some recent international research shows that up to 34% of children have been bullied or harassed online, and one in seven children aged between eight and 17 years old say they have come across harmful or inappropriate material online.
The same study says that 57% of parents are unsure where to get information to help protect their children while online. More information on this research can be found at NetSafe.
Dr Martyn Wild, an e-learning expert and cyber safety advocate, said a parent not knowing how to safely surf the net was like letting your child play in traffic.
“The internet provides incredible opportunities to communicate, be creative and to learn and to have fun,” Dr Wild said. “But just like putting a helmet on before riding a bike or putting sunscreen on at the beach there are some fundamental rules parents should observe to make sure it’s a safe experience.”
“Children are by their very nature, risk takers. Parents need to know how to help their children manage the risks they face every time they are online”.
“With modern telecommunications cyber bullying can follow children where ever they go and the anonymity that often accompanies it adds another stressful element for children to face.”
Dr Wild and TelstraClear have moved to provide practical, easy to understand, guidance for parents. Dr Wild has framed five ways to become a savvy internet parent and five ways to help protect your child online.
That will be backed by Dr Wild holding free public seminars in Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland.