Blue Ridge Community College is sponsoring two workshops on Internet safety and ethics for Valley students. Two things that may sometimes fall by the waste side each time your child logs on to his/her computer.
Online expert Joe Showker is showing Valley students the other side to social networks like My Space and Facebook. "They need to realize that there are consequences to their actions on the computer," he says. "There are a lot of people out there on the Internet."
Fort Defiance High School Junior Kevin Delawder uses My Space and Facebook all the time. "You can meet a lot of people through there," he says. "I just have a lot of friends on there I talk to, people I met at camps and stuff."
But online predators are also camping out in these networks. "They can be judged, they can be evaluated and can be approached based on the personal info they put up there," says Showker.
Forcing students like Delawder to be more responsible.
"I've heard the stuff that's happened and I try to watch what I put on there," he says. A choice to consider for high schoolers that may put their professional career at risk. "So many students don't realize that when they put that picture up that someone is able to see that that may be in a decision making posture and decide the wrong things about them," says Showker.
My Space and Facebook are good ways to communicate online. Experts say the best way to protect yourself is by utilizing your privacy settings on your computer.