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The door that’s not locked - New Internet Safety Website

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WINNIPEG, MB – February 8, 2010 - Canadian parents will receive a new tool to help keep their children safer on the Internet today with the national launch of The Door
that’s not Locked (
www.thedoorthatsnotlocked.ca).  This unique, one-stop-shop for Internet safety information will provide parents, teachers and anyone else interested in keeping kids safe online with the tools and resources they need to do so. The Door that’s not Locked refers to safety concerns regarding the unlocked door of the Internet.   In time for Safer
Internet Day on February 9th 2010, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection has partnered with the Government of Canada to help families understand the good, bad, and ugly about the web.

“Safer Internet Day reminds us of the importance in combating on-line
victimization, especially when it involves our children,” said Public Safety
Minister, Vic Toews.  “The Government of Canada remains committed to the
global fight against the sexual exploitation of children on the Internet. We
will continue to work with our valued partners such as the Canadian Centre
for Child Protection and support the work of the RCMP’s National Child
Exploitation Coordination Centre, who is making valuable progress to target
those who prey on children online.”

In a recent survey conducted by the Canadian Centre for Child Protection,
75% of parents were concerned about their children’s online safety.  88% of
parents said they had no particular website that they went to for Internet
safety education.  The survey identified that parents would like a credible,
reliable, easy-to-navigate, age-specific website to find answers to their
Internet safety questions.

“The Internet has become an indispensible part of our children’s lives, so
it’s vital that adults take steps to ensure their kids are safe while
online. While many parents are quick to lock the front door of their home,
they allow their kids to experience the unsupervised, open door of the
Internet,” said Lianna McDonald, Executive Director of the Canadian Centre
for Child Protection. “Whether it is contact with people who have harmful
intentions, or content that is inappropriate for children, the Internet can
pose real risk to kids. The Door that’s not Locked is designed to help open
the door to parents, teachers and anyone else who is dedicated to helping
keep kids safe online.”

While the Canadian Centre will be releasing a new study on online luring
later this year, to date, Cybertip.ca has forwarded 540 reports classified
as luring to law enforcement. “Our luring reports reveal that offenders use
a variety of tactics such as flattery, threats, persistence, and exposure to
sexually explicit material to make children comply with their requests.
Whether it is requesting inappropriate pictures, having sexual
conversations, or attempting to meet in person, these individuals use
whatever means necessary to have the child comply,” added McDonald. “As
persistent as these individuals are with children, parents have to be even
more persistent in teaching their kids to understand the risks and how to be
safe.”

"As a partner under the National Strategy for the Protection of Children
from Sexual Exploitation on the Internet, the Canadian Centre for Child
Protection is a leader in the development of awareness and educational
products," said RCMP Sgt. Lana Prosper, with the National Child Exploitation
Coordination Centre.  "The fight against child sexual exploitation is a
priority for local, national, and international police agencies. Internet
safety resources such as the one launched today are a key component in our
ability to help keep our children safe."

The Door that’s not Locked website was created based on the results of a
nationwide parent survey and provides Canadians with the information they
have been seeking. It provides Canadians with comprehensive information
about what their kids are doing online, the risks associated with those
activities and provides important tips and strategies to help keep their
kids safe.

In addition to the new website, the Canadian Centre will distribute three
million age-specific Safety and the Internet brochures to schools across
Canada. McDonald extended her thanks to the Government of Canada as well as
to Bell, Honeywell, Shaw and TELUS for their ongoing support, which plays a
significant role in the Canadian Centre’s ability to carry out important
initiatives such as The Door That’s Not Locked.

BACKGROUNDER:

Interesting Online Statistics:

According to a recent report from the Pew Research Centre (Social Media &
Mobile Internet Use among Teens and Young Adults, February 2010):

*         93 per cent of teens aged 12-17 now go online.

*         Nearly two thirds, or 63 per cent of kids in this age group go
online every day.

*         A full 36 per cent of 12-17 year-olds go online several times a
day.

*         Teen use of social networking sites has risen significantly: 73
per cent of wired teens now use such sites, compared to just over half of
online teens (55 per cent) that used them in November 2006.

*         31 per cent of online teens are getting health, diet or physical
fitness information from the Internet.

*         17 per cent of teens use the Internet to gather information about
health topics that are hard to discuss with others such as sexual health
topics and drug use.

*         Nearly seven in ten, or 69 per cent of teens aged 12-17 have a
computer.

Safer Internet Day

Safer Internet Day takes place each year in February to promote safer and
more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially
amongst children and young people across the world. This year it will take
place on February 9th.

Since the first year in 2004, participation in this event has been steadily
growing, with an increase in general awareness, stronger involvement of
relevant stakeholders in the field of internet safety and a high level of
media interest.  In 2009 more than 120 organizations in 56 countries took
part in Safer Internet Day celebrations, organizing local, national and
international events ranging from safety sessions in schools and
competitions for young people to public meetings and conferences.


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