Man typing on computer keyboard
Man typing on computer keyboard

Free internet safety session Tweed families shouldn't miss

A FREE interactive presentation aims to keep Tweed families safe online.

PCYC NSW and the NSW Police Youth and Crime Prevention Command will host an hour-long session as part of Safer Internet Day tonight at 7pm at the PCYC Tweed Heads.

The presentation in the Tweed is one of 64 across the state based on the Australian Federal Police's ThinkUKnow.

The community is invited to attend especially targeting young people, parents, caregivers, grandparents, schools, and P & C Committees.

The cyber safety program bridges the knowledge gap between adults and young people so that everyone has an understanding of the roles they play and what they can do if something goes wrong online.

PCYC NSW CEO Dominic Teakle said the organisation believed it is their responsibility to provide families with the information they need to combat issues around cyber-bullying, sharing information online especially images that may be compromising, and developing respectful and safe relationships.

"Through the many digital channels available these days we all have access to a virtually limitless world," he said.

"Parents and young people should be aware of the risks associated with this access.

"For many young people online interactions are as important as face-to-face ones.

"We want to empower them to manage their online relationships and develop safe and appropriate behaviour through open and honest discussions."

NSW Police Youth and Crime Prevention Command Acting Superintendent Mark Wall explained it was important to be cautious at all times.

"We urge all online users to have strong security measures in place, with a password containing letters, numbers and symbols and make sure all your software is up to date," he said.

"Avoid giving out personal details when possible and ensure that you have a secure connection before conducting any online transactions.

"It is important to remind your friends and family that before posting images and information online, it is almost impossible to remove them."

Celebrated globally in 130 countries, Safer Internet Day is co-ordinated in Australia by the office of the eSafety Commissioner, Julie Inman Grant.

Safer Internet Day Factsheet

- 87 per cent of Australians access the internet everyday

- 60 per cent of young people have trouble sleeping after using social media

- 50 per cent of teenagers experience fear of missing out (FOMO)

- 11 per cent of adult Australians have experienced image-based abuse

The Australian Institute of Criminology conducted a study into young people and sexting. Out of a sample of 2,000 respondents between the ages of 13 to 18 years, this study found that:

•Almost half (49 per cent) reported having sent a sexual picture or video of themselves to another party.

•Two thirds (67 per cent) reported having received a sexual image.

•Sexting was prevalent among all age groups, however 13-15 year olds were particularly likely to receive sexual images.

•Most sexting occurred between partners in committed relationships.

•The young people reported the practice of sexting as a consensual and enjoyable part of their intimate relationships.

(All statistics from the Australian Federal Police website and the Office of the eSafety Commissioner)

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