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Dorset Police Supporting Safer Internet Day

The Dorset Safe Schools and Communities Team (SSCT) are hosting a ‘Safer Internet Day’ conference for professionals who work with children and young people, to coincide with the eleventh annual Safer Internet Day on 11 February 2013.

This year’s theme is ‘let’s create a better internet together’.

The SSCT will be offering a series of workshops and presentations giving professionals opportunities to improve their knowledge and understanding about what young people are using online, so that they can help support them.

Training in internet safety produced by the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP) will be offered, which will enable staff to pass on their knowledge to young people, and in turn educate them around some of the hazards and advantages of being online.

Children can face a number of risks online which include accessing inappropriate websites, losing control over pictures and videos, giving away personal information and communicating with strangers.

Mark Howell, Internet Safety Officer for the SSCT, said: “Safer Internet Day is a global event and we are really pleased to be part of it.

“We wanted to provide professionals with an opportunity to gain more knowledge and understanding of some of the risks posed by the internet. By helping them become aware of how to minimise these, they can support children and young people to enjoy the internet safely.

“The SSCT deliver education and training to children and young people, parents, carers and professionals across Dorset throughout the year, so having a conference on Safer Internet Day is an opportunity to promote the importance of delivering such education and raising awareness of the work we are carrying out on a daily basis.”

A representative from the Dorset Police’s Paedophile Online Investigation Team (POLIT) will also be giving a presentation at the conference.

POLIT is a new team formed within the Child Abuse Investigation Team (CAIT) who work closely with partner agencies and other police forces to identify and prosecute offenders and protect vulnerable children from sexual exploitation.

With the theme of a ‘better internet together’ parents are also encouraged to use Safer Internet Day to become aware of the positives and negatives of being online, and help children and young people to be able to enjoy the internet safely and responsibly.

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Issued: 7 February 2014