Basic Rules for
Online Safety for Teens

The most important thing to remember is that when you're online in any kind of a public forum, you're out in public and anyone can read whatever you post. You should never post anything on the Internet you wouldn't want known to the pubic at large.

Keep Your Identity Private - Do not give out your full name, your mailing address, your telephone number, the name of your school, or any other information that could help someone determine your actual identity. The same applies to your family and friends. Never reveal anything about other people that could possibly get them into trouble.
Never Get Together With Someone You "Meet" Online - Remember, you never know for certain if people you meet online are who they say they are. If you do feel it's appropriate to meet with someone, discuss it with your parents. The safest procedure is to have your parents talk with the parents of the other person and for both of you to bring your parents along on the first meeting.
Never Respond to E-mail, Chat Comments, or Newsgroup Messages That Are Hostile, Belligerent, Inappropriate, Or In Any Way Make You Feel Uncomfortable - Show it to your parents or a trusted adult to see if there is anything you can do to make it stop. Sending a response just encourages the person.
Talk With Your Parents About Their Expectations And Ground Rules For Going Online - Communicating with your parents doesn't mean that you have to give up your privacy. It just means that you come to an agreement based on mutual trust and understanding.
Do Not Do Anything Online That Is Against The Law Or That Antagonizes Anyone.
Do Not Purchase Anything OverThe Internet Without Your Parent's Permission.

For more information on Internet Safety, please go to i-SAFE, SafeTeens.com, NetSmartz, Internet Super Heroes or Kid Safety on the Internet.

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