May 19, 2009. Time is 10 a.m.
Did you know over 75% of children online are willing to share personal information about themselves and their family? Children and young people need to use the Internet for growth and development. But the same ICT driven environment can be a source of worry and abuse. " Read the Event Report - African Children Cyber Safety Initiative! For 2010 the Better City, Better Life and Security with ICTs for Young People forum will be held.
This year, to mark World Telecommunication and Information Society Day, International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Council adopted the theme: “Protecting children in cyberspace”.
Now for the first time, in line with this theme, the African Information Security Association (AISA) is organizing the “Protecting Children and Young People Online” forum to promote the adoption of policies and strategies that will protect children in cyberspace and promote their safe access to online resources.
“Protecting Children and Young People Online” forum
The forum takes place at the AISA Secretariat which is at Jidaw Systems Limited, Lagos, Nigeria on May 19, 2009. Time is 10 a.m. Want to stay abreast of developments in this area? The forum is free, but interested participants need to register before the event. Register online and collect your registration number through the Jidaw office: 12 Eric Moore Street, Wemabod Estate, Off Adeniyi Jones Ave, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria. Tel: 01-7940562, +234-7094094942, +234- 8035007778, 01-4808445, 07025333756, 01-8958064, 08052647395
The AISA forum has been recognized by the ITU as one of the Worldwide Initiatives organized to mark the World Telecommunications and Information Society Day (WTISD) 2009.
AISA members in different parts of Africa and across the world, are encouraged to carry out similar initiatives and report back to AISA.
AISA is a member organization created to promote Information security in Africa. Members get involved through events, web content, campaigns against Cybercrime and activities that support the development of secure information environments in Africa. It focuses on the promotion of awareness, continuous professional development, policies and linkages/networks for information security development in Africa. AISA looks forward to collaborating with you to protect children and young people in cyberspace.
Areas of interest include Risks and vulnerabilities to children in cyberspace; Raising awareness within stakeholders; Identifying and developing preventive measures and practical tools to reduce threats and minimize risk; Sharing of best practices, knowledge and experience
The children are our future. Really?
The children are our future. What future? A future of pornography or one of social and economic prosperity? How secure is that future? How vulnerable is that future? Is cyberspace safe and secure for future generations? The need for safe computing, online practices have never been greater. More people now access to the Internet, more children are going online. The Internet has become a much needed resource.
However, the vulnerable, especially children are increasingly being targeted and exposed to danger online. You will be shocked at some of the activities children are exposed to when accessing the Internet. E-mail, chat rooms, online forums have become the targets of hackers, online predators, pedophiles and cyber bandits. Hoping for the best is handing over the initiative to the predators. It’s easy to see why proactive measures are needed. Children and young people need access to the Internet and online resources for growth and development in a safe and secure environment.
Promoting Awareness - All Key Stakeholders involved
AISA in line with its mission to promote information security therefore created the “Protecting Children and Young People Online” initiative to protect and realizing the rights of children. Promoting awareness is critical in key aspects of developing an inclusive knowledge society. Information security and especially the protection of children online is no exception. All key stakeholders are involved in the “Protecting Children and Young People Online” initiative – children, parents, students, educators, business owners, civil society, etc. AISA plans to examine the role of different stakeholders and existing initiatives, as well as the development of Practical “Online Children protection” strategies.
Let’s be honest, we need to address the growing threats to children as they browse the Internet and access information online.
The Opportunities. The Threats.
The startling truth is that computers have transformed the world – more opportunities and better prospects. In fact digital literacy has become a life skill just like reading and writing. Change has been massive according to the ITU website, “By the end of 2008, there were over 1.5 billion people online, up from under 200 million at the beginning of 1998”. Children use the Internet to learn, access information, communicate with friends and network with their peers
But at the same time, young people are giving out personal and sensitive information to strangers online. Children are being exposed to pornography online. It is clear that guardians, teachers and parents are not doing enough. What is the point in knowing about parental control software without installing it? According to ITU surveys: “Over 60% of children and teenagers talk in chat rooms on a daily basis; 3 in 4 children online are willing to share personal information about themselves and their family in exchange for goods and services; 1 in 5 children will be targeted by a predator or paedophile each year; While 30% of teenage girls say they have been sexually harassed in a chat room, only 7% tell their parents, for fear their online access will be limited”.
Welcome to the Online and Risk age. The cold, hard facts indicate that clear risks include pornography, violence, addictive online games, online fraud, cyber-bullying, abusive and derogatory language, racial abuse and hate. The global reach and virtual nature of online interactions make it easier push and spread negative ideas and messages globally. Think of it, is this the future? Is this what the future should be exposed to at such young ages? Food for thought? It is careless to gamble with the future. Postpone the future? God forbid!
African Information Security Association (AISA)
AISA is fully involved in the movement to tackle the growing threats to children as they browse the Internet and access information online. AISA is member driven organization. It is created to promote Information security in Africa. Members get involved through events, web content, campaigns against Cybercrime as well as activities that support the development of secure information environments in Africa.
World Telecommunication and Information Society Day
The World Telecommunication Day has been celebrated annually on 17 May since 1969, marking the founding of ITU and the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention in 1865. The UN General Assembly adopted a resolution (A/RES/60/252) in March 2006 stipulating that World Information Society Day shall be celebrated every year on 17 May. In November 2006, the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference in Antalya, Turkey, decided to celebrate both events on 17 May as World Telecommunication and Information Society Day.
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