Media Release: ThinkUKnow receives outstanding prevention initiative award
Release Date: Wednesday, September 04 2013, 08:35 AM
The Australian Federal Police (AFP) acknowledges National Child Protection Week (NCPW) this week, an annual event aiming to raise awareness that the wellbeing and safety of Australia's children is everyone's responsibility.
As part of NCPW, the National Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN) will hand out its annual "Play Your Part Awards" to recipients across Australia, to showcase exemplary initiatives that contribute to preventing child abuse and neglect.
ThinkUKnow, which is a partnership between the AFP and Microsoft, and proudly supported by Datacom, ninemsn and the Northern Territory Police Force will this year receive one of NAPCAN's awards.
ThinkUKnow educates parents and carers of children around Australia on how to stay safe online. The program aims to open the lines of communication between adults and children so that activity on the Internet is as much a topic of discussion as what happened at school that day or in sport.
AFP National Manager High Tech Crime Operations Tim Morris said he was very pleased to hear that the AFP had been acknowledged in the work it does to empower Australians to protect themselves online.
"I am thrilled that the ThinkUKnow program has been recognised as a successful initiative for keeping children safe online," Assistant Commissioner Morris said.
"The national award recognises the important role ThinkUKnow has played in creating safer online communities for children and young people."
Chief Security Advisor of Microsoft Australia James Kavanagh said he is delighted to see the momentum of the ThinkUKnow partnership and the recognition it has received.
"Almost every night of the week, ThinkUKnow volunteers travel to schools and workplaces across Australia," Mr Kavanah said.
"They help parents understand a range of online issues and how best to ensure their children can learn and interact safely online. The award recognises the enthusiasm of parents and the dedication of over 260 volunteers."
During 2012-2013, the AFP's Child Protection Operations team arrested or summonsed 92 child sex offenders for over 204 child sex offence charges.
National Child Protection Week is a nationally-coordinated event to engage, educate and create understanding among Australians to highlight that everyone has a role in protecting children and young people from violence, abuse and neglect.
The theme for this year's NCPW campaign is "Protecting children is everybody's business; play your part". Further information about ThinkUKnow can be found at www.thinkuknow.org.au
If you suspect the abuse, neglect or exploitation of a child, report it to Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
AFP National Media (02) 6131 6333
Tips for parents
- Parents and adult role models should lead by example – demonstrate good behaviour so that children follow.
- Raise awareness in the community to better protect children from abuse and neglect.
- Parents and adult role models should encourage open lines of communication with children.
- Monitor computers and mobile phones to ensure children are not exposed to inappropriate material.
- Possible signs that a child might be being groomed online include: excessive use of the computer; aggression around computer usage; secretive behaviour; change in the use of sexual language; unexplained gifts or cash; and finding pornography on the computer.
Tips for youth
As part of education and awareness raising of online risks, the AFP provides the following guidelines/tips to youth:
- Make sure your profile is set to private, and that only your real world friends are your contacts
- Tell your friends and family not to post photos of you online without your permission - and do the same for them;
- Don't post images of others without their consent
- Find out within the applications you use how to lock down the ability for others to copy or forward your images
- Be wary when interacting online with people you don't know in the real world - people are not always who they say they are
- Report problems to a website, or in the case of grooming or other offences, your local police. You can also report online through www.thinkuknow.org.au and the Report Abuse button - the information is provided to the AFP who will look into the matter