“Let’s help young people understand e-safety” – Data Protection Day Message

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For Data Protection Day, on 28 January 2016, the Data Protection Authorities of the Channel Islands are encouraging people to think about their online footprint and how to use technology to the full while maintaining control of their personal data.

With technology becoming a greater part of a young person’s life than ever before, the Commissioner is supporting the efforts across the Channel Islands to engage with children and young people on the subject of safe internet use, in the run-up to Safer Internet Day on 9 February 2016.

The Data Protection Offices are now members of the committees across the islands that together seek to keep up to date with e-safety issues and promote awareness through schools and the wider community, and are pleased to support the work being done by them.

In Guernsey, the Online Safety Committee is building on previous Safer Internet Day events by hosting the inaugural Digital ACE event at Beau Sejour on Saturday 6 February.  With ACE standing for Aspire, Create, Empower, this event is about providing young people with an environment that can feed and support their Aspirations, provide the inspiration and tools to Create new things and Empower people to learn, discover and be safe in our digital world.  As well as the chance to experience offerings from a number of exhibitors, experts will be delivering sessions around being safe and secure online, online gaming and what parents need to know about how children and young people interact with technology and the risks that that brings.  Further details can be found at http://lanyard.com/2016/digitalace/

In Jersey, the Education department is using Safer Internet Day as the opportunity to launch their new multi-agency E-Safety Committee, coordinating a number of events in schools and youth organisations during the week beginning 8 February 2016 to raise awareness of e-safety and how young people can protect themselves online.  Prison Me No Way and Adam Burroughs of Barnados will be delivering a range of interactive e-safety assemblies in schools as well as spending time at the Youth Service Move on Café and attending parent evenings.

The Islands Commissioner, Emma Martins, said that it was crucial that young people were fully informed about e-safety.

She said: “The message that our office want to give around taking care of your personal data and being careful about data security is inextricably linked with the work that both these Committees are doing in respect of e-safety. Much of the meaningful work that can be done in this respect is in the area of education and awareness.”

“With children of increasingly young age accessing and using the internet, the fact that such work is being so well supported by these Committees in conjunction with the Education Departments across the Islands is a really positive thing. Data Protection specialists working with education professionals is essential if we are going to ensure individuals are given good advice and protection with regards their personal data.”

“I am delighted that my Office is able to support the Committees and the fantastic work they are doing and would encourage parents and children alike to take a moment to find out more about this increasingly important area.”