NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — With children back in school and using technology, the New Hanover and Pender Counties District Attorney’s Office has made an internet safety contract available online for families to go over with their kids.
New Hanover And Pender Counties District Attorney Ben David said the internet safety contract urges parents to discuss with their kids which apps are approved for them to use, and information or images that should not be posted on the internet.
“With all the dangers that are out there, parents really make the best police, and that means to just sit down and have a conversation about what you expect. How many hours a day do you want them online, are you going to share passwords, are their things that you’re basically going to make sure don’t change just because you’re in the virtual world, rather than the real one, because as we see time and again a lot of the things that start online, end up at this courthouse,” said Ben David, New Hanover and Pender Counties District Attorney.
David says child predators can use social media and the internet to target children, and many of them are not aware of the signs, or what steps to take if someone they don’t know approaches them online.
“A lot of these predators will engage our children by, –what we call grooming behavior,” said David. “Where they’re becoming their friends, building that trust, and then learning about whether there’s going to be any adult at the home, or what the soccer schedule is like, and that’s when bad things can occur.”
The contract can be altered for each household, parents and children can sign it after discussing safety and rules to confirm understanding.
“Kids know more about these cellphones than their parents, but they don’t know as much about life, and that’s why it’s so important for parents and kids to come together to understand that there’s rules for the road, when you’re on the internet superhighway, and also that safety is something that is everyone’s concern, whether you’re crossing the street or you’re on the information super highway,” said David.
David says he also encourages school principals to distribute information on the internet safety contract to students and parents.