On Tuesday, March 15, 2016, a gathering of interested adults, youth, and some children met at the Logan County Extension Office to hear from experts regarding “Cyber Safety: the Ugly Truth”, a program sponsored by the Youth Action Team of Logan County, Inc., Kathy Thweatt, MSPH, Barren River District Health Department welcomed all and then turned the program over to the speakers: SRO Eric Evans, a retired KY State Police Officer, Logan County School Resource Officer Boubacz, and Barry W. Goley, PhD.
Each presented facts and details regarding the dangers and consequences of Cyber Surfing. They encouraged keeping safe online as the internet can be a great research tool and a fun way to keep in touch with friends and family, but it can also present dangers. They shared that nothing is private and encouraged all to be cautious about what is sent. Phone numbers, addresses, school names, and inappropriate pictures should never be sent. Any of this personal information may also be sent to others very quickly.
They shared examples of 18 year olds finding themselves on the Registered Sexual Offenders List before they even realized what had happened. Barry Goley shared there are 51 registered sex offenders in Logan County. Each speaker encouraged parents to model, teach, and monitor cyber safety. It was stated if you see something that seems “too good to be true”, then it probably is. Never agree to meeting or having someone visit your home, don’t send money or give out vital information.
A Cyber Safety brochure was given that was prepared by the Washington State School Safety Center, http://www.k12.wa.us/SafetyCenter/. Currently, plans are to offer another opportunity to continue to learn about and remind the community of the necessity to be Cyber Safety Smart.