SCARSDALE, N.Y. - With the world becoming more digitally-centric place by the day, Scarsdale Middle School students were recently offered advice about cybersafety from the local police department.
This week, Scarsdale Police Detective Sherry Albano visited several middle school classes to provide information in an attempt to “empower” the students to do the right thing while perusing the Internet.
During the visits to health teacher Michael Greaney’s classes, Albano - who is the department’s Youth Liaison Officer - discussed online safety, how to avoid being the victim of cyberbullies or online predators and how to avoid some of the pitfalls of social media.
“The world has changed in terms of bullying. Today, with the Internet, bullying can be much pervasive,” she said. “I’m here to provide (students) with accurate information and empower you. You’ve got the power to do the right thing online.”
According to Albano, even students with private social media accounts can be victimized by hackers and Internet predators to steal identities, names, information, photos and passwords. She reminded the students about an Arkansas teenager who who kidnapped and killed by a man she met in a Christian chatroom.
Albano also warned the students about certain mobile applications like Snapchat and WhatsApp, which can give predators unfettered access to photos and information of the children.
“You have to be wise. They know how to play the game. There’s no such thing as Internet-only friends,” she added. “Sending inappropriate photos of yourself can result in very, very serious charges. Don’t make poor choices, you can’t take those choices back.”
For those interested in discussing cyberbullying or the dangers of the Internet, Albano has made herself available. She will receive questions that parents or students may have and will serve as a resource to parents for information and tips on drug and alcohol prevention at email@example.com or at (914) 722-1204.