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This is number 16 and the final post in a series of great articles designed to put in school newsletters to keep parents informed around the latest cybersafety issues. CybersmartThey have been developed by the Cybersmart team at ACMA and are available via http://www.cybersmart.gov.au/Outreach/Connected.aspx

Schools are encouraged to copy and paste these in your school newsletter or share them online. Find the series tagged in Global2 under Cybersmart

Safe file sharing online

File sharing services can be a great way to share music, software and movies, but if the owner of that material does not want them shared, your child could be breaching copyright laws and opening themselves up to spam and viruses.

Many media files shared using torrents are not legitimate and of poor quality, so it’s worthwhile utilising services where you can legally purchase exactly what you want.

Children can protect themselves when downloading files by:

  • Checking that the content being downloaded is legally available. Some content online is licensed to be available for free, but most torrent sites share files illegally. By using legal file-sharing sites, your child will download much better quality files.
  • Being wary. Many files on sharing networks are infected with viruses or are mislabelled and can contain offensive or illegal material. Ensure your virus software is always up to date.
  • Adjusting settings. Your child may be unknowingly sharing everything, including personal information and files.

If you or someone you know wants to talk about online issues, visit the Cybersmart Online Helpline (www.cybersmart.gov.au/report.aspx) or call Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800.

cybersmart.gov.au

DEECD resources can be found http://www.education.vic.gov.au/about/programs/bullystoppers/Pages/parents.aspx