The Government's approach to cybersafety acknowledges the key role for teachers, parents and carers in the online safety of children, and provides them with the necessary information to assist with this task. This recognises that there is no single solution to assisting with the protection of children online, and the need for a multi–faceted approach to educating young people.
In particular, the ACMA's outreach program was been expanded to provide additional general cybersafety awareness presentations to teachers, parents and students which highlight the key issues and strategies to minimise potential online risks.
In July 2009, the ACMA launched 'Cybersmart’, a new website that provides up-to-date cybersafety information for parents, as well as information and activities specifically designed for children.
Cybersmart links to dedicated resources for teachers, enabling them to confidently instruct Australian children on all aspects of cybersafety.
The website also contains a link to an online helpline, allowing young people to chat online with a trained adult about issues they have experienced online.
The ACMA has improved the accessibility of existing online reporting mechanisms, so that children can quickly and easily report prohibited online content or potentially illegal behaviour.
New content is regularly added to the Cybersmart website in close consultion and the Youth Advisory Group on cybersafety.
In January 2009, the ACMA rolled out an accredited Cybersafety Outreach Professional Development for Educators program. The program covers topics including how children use technology, digital literacy, cyberbullying, identity protection and the legal responsibility of schools to minimise risk. Resources are provided to these teachers to help establish effective cybersafety programs in their schools.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority’s ‘Cybersafety Outreach – Pre-Service Teacher’ program, for education students was launched in June 2010. The program aims to equip pre-service teachers with the skills and knowledge to educate their future students about cybersafety issues such as cyberbullying, sexting, safe social networking, cyber security and identity protection
The ACMA has continued to develop and expand its existing education materials on the Cybersmart website, with resources that include:
- 'Cybersmart Detectives', the interactive online safety game that teaches children how to keep safe online
- ‘Hector’s World’, a new, multi-media resource for use by young children, now available on the Cybersmart website
- the suite of cyberbullying materials 'Let's Fight it Together'.