Internet Safety rules
Netsmartz is created by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. If you are victimized by illegal activity over the Internet, or if you know someone who is, you can call the Cybertipline. It's completely anonymous.
Internet safety tips
- Don't share personal information online, especially with strangers. This includes name, address, birthdays, any financial information, and even what school you attend. It also includes anything that you'd just rather not share. If you don't want to, don't.
- Be careful of people you meet online--that friendly 17-year-old you met who knows your friend Sean might actually be a 45-year-old felon who made a lucky guess.
- Be careful sharing even details which don't mean much on their own. Information from different accounts or times can be pieced together to show where you live and when you're away from home, and can even give an alarmingly thorough picture of who you are and how you live.
- Once you post something online, you lose control of it. Anyone who sees it might keep a copy of it or send a copy of it to anyone else. This includes archive.org, Google cache, former friends, and exes. It also means that someone spiteful might send your friends-only content to people you don't want to see it.
- You don't have to respond to people you meet online, and sometimes it's best if you don't. This includes trolls, cyberbullies, and anyone else acting in a way that's hateful or bothersome.
- If someone is bothering you, report it--especially if it's about something illegal or hateful. Most reputable sites have a way for you to report abusive users. Depending on the circumstances the other person might have his account suspended or might even be arrested and prosecuted.