SEARCH Presents Internet Safety Tips to Boy Scouts

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SEARCH takes a special interest in reaching out to children and their parents to alert them to potential dangers lurking on the Internet. Most recently, SEARCH Computer Training Specialists Earl Door and Steven Bolt were guest speakers at the Boy Scout (Troop 50) meeting at the Buddhist Church of Sacramento on November 16. Approximately 50 Boy Scouts and their parents attended the Internet Safety presentation. Topics covered included what not to post on Craig's List or social networking sites, such as MySpace. Predators and fraudsters "data mine" these sites and others to discover personal information.

"Boy Scouts would know better than to walk down a dangerous street alone at night, and there are places on the Internet that are just as dangerous," said Mr. Bolt.

The training specialists discussed video games, specifically online gaming, which is an area where kids are especially vulnerable to predators. Online gaming provides the ability to play videogames against other gamers throughout the world. It provides a means of real-time communication, (voice chat), email, Web surfing and texting to those who participate. Video games are very fast computers, and have been referred to as application-specific computers; they just happen to run video games. Fraudsters also easily use the game to infiltrate the parents' personal files, financial information and more.

"We tell the parents that kids should not have a computer in their room that's connected to the Internet," said Mr. Door. "Having the computer and video game systems in a room that can be monitored easily by the parents makes for safer Web surfing."

During the one-and one-half hour presentation, the training specialists demonstrated how quickly and easily someone could get access to personal information by using volunteers in the audience. According to attendees, it was an eye-opening experience for both the Boy Scouts and their parents.

For more information about the SEARCH High Tech Crime Program and Training Courses: http://www.search.org/programs/hightech/.