Cyberbullying, grooming and online fraud will be the focus of a nationwide initiative promoting the responsible use of technology for children and young people.

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As part of this year’s Safer Internet Day (SID), which takes place tomorrow, Suffolk Constabulary is supporting the launch of www.ezsafe.co.uk, a resource bank of advice, information and support relating to children and young people’s behaviour online.

Alan Osborne community safety manager said: “Social networking sites and chat rooms represent a real threat of online crime and anyone using them or whose children are using them should be aware of the associated risks.

“Safer Internet Day is about raising awareness and we would encourage parents to discuss with their children what they do on the internet and the risks that come with it.

“Children do not need to be discouraged from using social networking sites but we can help teach them about protecting their personal information and themselves.

“Remember, you and your children are in control of how public or how private you want your page to be, so learn how to use the site and use the privacy features it offers.

“Some of the information listed on these sites you wouldn’t give out to strangers in the street so why would you do it online?”

The event is also being used to remind people to be aware of the numerous scams, created everyday with the purpose of tricking people into handing over money or personal details.

Mr Osborne added: “Online scams can come in the form of emails, which will often initially or some way down the line request that money is sent, or through people who will engage with you in order to try and get something from you.

“We would remind all residents to be careful when sharing information with anyone online and to be cautious of anyone that approaches you out of the blue who you do not know.

“Remember if something appears too good to be true then it probably is.”

More information on staying safe online can be found at www.suffolk.police.uk/safetyadvice/personalsecurity/onlinesafety.aspx

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