Are your kids surfing, chatting, posting and sharing online this summer?

ISC2 volunteers and local Toronto Scotiabankers talk to kids in schools about internet safety and cyber-bullying.

(ISC)² ® and Scotiabank offer tips for helping kids stay safe online

TORONTO, June 11, 2013 /CNW/ - Smartphones, social media and sophisticated mobile technology have taken schoolyard chatter online. In the next few weeks, schools will be out for the summer and kids will have more time to spend chatting online and sharing photos and stories on social media. But do your kids know how to protect themselves online?

"Young people have the ability and flexibility to keep up with rapidly changing social media technology, but they don't always have the judgment, sensitivity or awareness needed to protect themselves and respect others online," says Greg Thompson, Scotiabank's Deputy Chief Information Security Officer and (ISC)² Board member. "That's why Scotiabank joined forces with the charitable arm of (ISC)² over a year ago to help bring their Safe and Secure Online program to Canada and equip students with trusted advice directly from information security experts."

Safe and Secure Online is a volunteer-based program that partners information security professionals with schools to educate students, parents and teachers on cyber issues affecting youth today, including topics such as cyber bullying, protecting personal information and sharing photos and video. The unique program uses peer-created content delivered by trained information security experts who volunteer to go into the classroom and speak with kids, as well as offer resources for parents and teachers.

Scotiabankers and (ISC)² volunteers Blair Campbell and Jason Sachowski visited the St. Mary Catholic School in Toronto earlier today and spoke with a middle school class about staying safe online. Here are a few tips they offer young people surfing the web:

  1. Control your image online - Take a moment to stop and think before sending out personal information, photos or video, because once they're online, the decision is out of your hands.
  2. Understand the technology - Respect your own and others' privacy and use privacy settings. Protect passwords and personal information such as your address or contact details.
  3. Online activity lasts forever - When posting anything online, remember that activity on the internet is never fully deleted or destroyed and will be accessible forever.
  4. Be suspicious - Online friends are still strangers.

"The Toronto Catholic District School Board Safe Schools Department is grateful to (ISC)and the volunteers from Scotiabank who are providing our students with additional supports and instruction in internet safety," says Rory McGuckin, TCDSB Superintendent of Safe Schools. "We are committed to keeping parents and students informed about the importance of protecting their privacy and maintaining respect for others, so that we can offer an effective and safe place to learn."

"Being more responsible online is an important life skill — one that I felt was critical to teach kids at an early age, especially as a parent myself," says Campbell, who led Safe and Secure Online's expansion into Canada in 2011, which has since grown to 45 volunteers who have helped over 3,500 children protect themselves online. "Parents also have a critical role to play by educating themselves about the Internet, guiding their child's online activity and leading by example. It's up to us as parents to help kids understand the risks and consequences associated with surfing the web."

(ISC)² created Safe and Secure Online in 2006 with Childnet International in the United Kingdom based on (ISC)² members' feedback that they wanted a way to educate the most vulnerable members of society — children. Since then, the program has gone global thanks to the grassroots efforts of (ISC)² members around the world.

"Over the past year, thanks in large part to the help of Scotiabank, Safe and Secure Online's presence in Canada has grown tremendously," said Julie Peeler, director of the (ISC)2 Foundation. "Scotiabank's continued support will help propel the growth of the program and improve online safety for many young Canadians."

For more information or to request a presentation, visit www.isc2cares.org or contact (ISC)² at foundation@isc2.org.

About the (ISC)² Foundation
The (ISC)2 Foundation is a non-profit charitable trust that aims to make the cyber world safer for everyone by supporting cyber security education and awareness in the community through its programs and the efforts of its members. Through the (ISC)2 Foundation, (ISC)2's global information security expert membership of nearly 90,000 seek to ensure that children everywhere have a positive, productive, and safe experience online, to spur the development of the next generation of cyber security professionals, and to illuminate major issues facing the industry now and in the future. For more information, please visit www.isc2cares.org.

About Scotiabank
Scotiabank is committed to supporting the communities in which we live and work, both in Canada and abroad, through our global philanthropic program, Bright Future.  Recognized as a leader internationally and among Canadian corporations for our charitable donations and philanthropic activities, Scotiabank has provided on average approximately $47 million annually to community causes around the world over each of the last five years. Visit us at www.scotiabank.com.

Video with caption: "ISC2 volunteers and local Toronto Scotiabankers talk to kids in schools about internet safety and cyber-bullying. ". Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20130611_C7286_VIDEO_EN_27896.mp4&posterurl=http://photos.newswire.ca/images/20130611_C7286_PHOTO_EN_27896.jpg&clientName=Scotiabank&caption=ISC2%20volunteers%20and%20local%20Toronto%20Scotiabankers%20talk%20to%20kids%20in%20schools%0D%0Aabout%20internet%20safety%20and%20cyber%2Dbullying%2E%0D%0A%0D%0A%0D%0A&title=SCOTIABANK%20%2D%20Are%20your%20kids%20surfing%2C%20chatting%2C%20posting%20and%20sharing%20online%20this%20summer%3F&headline=Are%20your%20kids%20surfing%2C%20chatting%2C%20posting%20and%20sharing%20online%20this%20summer%3F

SOURCE: Scotiabank

For further information:

Media Contacts:

Andrew Chornenky, Scotiabank Media Communications, 416-866-4826, Andrew.chornenky@scotiabank.com

Nadine Jahangir, Scotiabank Media Communications, 416-933-2927, Nadine.jahangir@scotiabank.com

Michelle Schafer, Merritt Group, Inc., 703-390-1525, schafer@merrittgrp.com