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McAfee eBook to keep kids, teens safe online

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McAfee has announced that a new, 10-step Internet Safety Plan eBook is available online through the McAfee Advice Center (www.mcafee.com/advice). The downloadable plan includes age-appropriate, easy-to-understand Internet safety guidelines for kids, "tweens", teens, and "newbies", providing tips for parents, educators, community groups and other influencers who want to educate consumers about Internet safety.

In conjunction with the eBook, McAfee also introduced a complementary quiz that challenges teens' knowledge of the rules of the digital road and their ability to stay safe from spyware, spam, scams and identity theft. The 10-question quiz, which can also be found at the Advice Center, offers grades ranging from "Risky Rebel" (for tweens and teens who score 6 or less) to "Digital Expert" (for answering 9 or 10 correctly).
"The days when people went online only to gather information and send e-mail have changed — the Internet is now an indispensable part of our daily lives," says Chris van Niekerk, regional director of McAfee South Africa. "Cyberspace is an exciting environment full of opportunity, but it is also increasingly risky, with numerous threats emerging daily.
"Parents need to be on guard whenever their children venture online, so we've developed some simple steps to help ensure that young people's online experiences are safe and pleasant. We've also designed a quiz that parents can encourage tweens and teens to take so they can better understand what online behaviour is safe and what is risky."
Teens and kids are known to engage in "risky" online behaviour. For example, more than 80% of young people currently participate in online games, and savvy malware authors have taken notice, creating password-stealing Trojans designed to steal their identities.  While 51% of teens have downloaded music, the search term "digital music" often leads to sites that can populate a computer with spyware, viruses and exploits without users' knowledge.
In addition, 45% of young people said someone they've never met has asked them for personal information online.
The McAfee eBook explains how families can work together as a team to set boundaries and create a list of rules to follow. The guidelines also include a section on how to save chat session logs, block users and report intruders, and it provides recommendations for age-appropriate browsers and search engines, among other tips. Finally, an online pledge certificate is available for download to allow families to print, sign and display near the computer to reinforce the mutual obligations necessary for computer safety.
McAfee's Internet Safety Plan  for the whole family eBook and the teen safety quiz are available free of charge by visiting www.mcafee.com/advice.