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Safer Internet Day – ‘Discover the digital world together…safely!’

The topic of this year’s event is the connection of generations and mutual education with the slogan ‘Discover the digital world together … safely’. The topic aims to encourage all cultures and generations across the world to stay safe online and together

Today our offline and online worlds are strongly connected, from families communicating via webcam with relatives and friends abroad to children doing their homework online. The online world is a unique arena where people of all ages can learn together and from each other, especially regarding online safety. Tech savvy youngsters can teach their elders how to use new technologies, while grandparents can draw on their life experiences to advise younger generations on how to stay safe online, as they discover the digital world together.

Whether you are 5, 40 or 75 years old, whether you use the internet once a month or several times a day – each person has something different to bring to the table that can help shape our online experiences and our understanding of online safety. We all have a role to play in ensuring that every child is safe online.

Several facts indicate the importance of education in the field of privacy and security online:

  • Did you know that 26% of children have a public profile on the social networks?
  • 12% of European 9-16 year olds say they have been bothered or upset by something on the internet, whereas 56% of parents whose children have received a disturbing message online are not even aware of this
  • 36% of 9-16 year olds claim that they definitely know more about the internet than their parents, and 87% of children use the internet at home.
  • 63% of children claim to have received most of the advice regarding online safety from their parents, and 58% from their teachers, indicating the great role of parents and teachers in the education about these important issues.

This year, Metamorphosis is also marking this day. Given the long years of work in the field of human rights and active engagement in the field of online privacy, the successful implementation of several projects for security and privacy of children online in the last 4 years, it is quite natural for the foundation to be included in all the initiatives with this purpose.

In order to facilitate the access to resources on this topic, the website “Safe on the Internet” has been developed where one can find useful and educational materials, animated games and short educational films for children, including a resource center with materials intended for the children, teachers and parents. You can also find posts on this topic on its Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/bezbednonainternet.

You too can join the marking of the Safer Internet Day. Teachers can do this by organizing events in the schools, meetings on this topic, a workshop, debate among young people, and parents can participate simply by talking with the children and exchanging experiences on this topic.

What is most important, not only on this day, but always, is for children to be safe and secure online, and the adults to create the necessary conditions for this, to properly advise and teach them, and to highlight the useful opportunities offered by the internet, at the same time warning them about the possible dangers.