Neowin: Microsoft’s Family Safety app exits preview, now generally available

Neowin: Microsoft’s Family Safety app exits preview, now generally available. “The app – as the name suggests – lets users keep a tab on family members and their digital usage. It lets users set screen limits, restrict access to certain websites for children, and even keep a tab on members’ whereabouts through location sharing. In addition to these, parents can also choose to receive weekly activity reports to monitor not just usage stats, but also the content that they are consuming.”

FBI: School Closings Due to COVID-19 Present Potential for Increased Risk of Child Exploitation

FBI: School Closings Due to COVID-19 Present Potential for Increased Risk of Child Exploitation. “Due to school closings as a result of COVID-19, children will potentially have an increased online presence and/or be in a position that puts them at an inadvertent risk. Due to this newly developing environment, the FBI is seeking to warn parents, educators, caregivers, and children about the dangers of online sexual exploitation and signs of child abuse.”

Lifehacker: Facebook’s Messenger Kids App Now Has More Parental Controls

Lifehacker: Facebook’s Messenger Kids App Now Has More Parental Controls. “Facebook has announced the launch of some new tools in its Parent Dashboard that should make it easier to monitor your child’s chat history, remove and report inappropriate images or videos, and log them out remotely.”

MIT Technology Review: Microsoft has created a tool to find pedophiles in online chats

MIT Technology Review: Microsoft has created a tool to find pedophiles in online chats. “Microsoft has created an automated system to detect sexual predators trying to groom children online. The tool, code-named Project Artemis, is designed to spot patterns of communication in conversations.”

OpenGov Asia: New website to provide Australians with a safer online experience

OpenGov Asia: New website to provide Australians with a safer online experience. “The national online hub provides comprehensive online education resources and tools to report harmful content. This will promote safer, more positive online experiences and help Australians learn more about safeguarding themselves and their children from online harms.”

Route Fifty: Ohio Establishes ‘Cyber Reserve’ to Combat Ransomware

Route Fifty: Ohio Establishes ‘Cyber Reserve’ to Combat Ransomware. “At least three local governments in Ohio and the Cleveland Hopkins International Airport have all been hit with ransomware attacks in the last year alone. The next time hackers go after a local government in Ohio, however, the state will have a new weapon to deploy: the Ohio Cyber Reserve.”

TechCrunch: TikTok’s new set of safety videos teach users about features, the app’s focus on ‘positivity’

TechCrunch: TikTok’s new set of safety videos teach users about features, the app’s focus on ‘positivity’. “TikTok today released a new set of safety videos designed to playfully inform users about the app’s privacy controls and other features — like how to filter comments or report inappropriate behavior, among other things. One video also addresses TikTok’s goal of creating a ‘positive’ social media environment, where creativity is celebrated and harassment is banned.”

Neowin: BBC launches digital wellbeing keyboard aimed at children

Neowin: BBC launches digital wellbeing keyboard aimed at children. “The BBC has announced the availability of its Own It keyboard app which aims to improve the digital wellbeing of children. The Own It app is interesting in that it functions as an app but also doubles as a keyboard which you can use across different apps. BBC has baked in machine learning which visually alerts the child if they’re writing something negative, prompting them to rethink whether or not they want to issue the message.”

The Journal (Ireland): Government to put pressure on social media companies over online safety

The Journal (Ireland): Government to put pressure on social media companies over online safety. “Minister for Communications Richard Bruton has said that he plans to introduce an independent online safety commissioner, following calls for more action to ensure that children are using the internet safely online.”

New York Times: The Baroness Fighting to Protect Children Online

New York Times: The Baroness Fighting to Protect Children Online. “Beeban Kidron, Silicon Valley’s latest antagonist, sat on the patio of a boutique hotel near Facebook’s headquarters recently, camouflaged in the local uniform of jeans and sneakers. A member of the House of Lords, she had just flown in from London to attend an international meeting hosted by the social network. And now, in a hotel thronging with tech executives, she was recounting her plan to overhaul how their companies treat children.”

Sex, drugs, and self-harm: Where 20 years of child online protection law went wrong (The Washington Post)

The Washington Post: Sex, drugs, and self-harm: Where 20 years of child online protection law went wrong. “Consumer and privacy advocates have alleged rampant COPPA violations by leading technology companies, including in a highly detailed 59-page complaint against YouTube last year. Even when federal authorities take action, the penalties typically come many years after the violations began and make little dent in corporate profit margins, the advocates say.”

Lifehacker: Teach Your Kids How to Respond to Hate Speech Online

Lifehacker: Teach Your Kids How to Respond to Hate Speech Online. “The main thing that’s keeping me from allowing my eight-year-old son to join all his friends on popular online multiplayer games isn’t a fear that he’s going to give personal information away to creeps. It’s that I don’t want him exposed to the hate speech that is so prevalent online.”

The Atlantic: Momo Is Not Trying to Kill Children

The Atlantic: Momo Is Not Trying to Kill Children. “To any concerned parents reading this: Do not worry. The ‘Momo challenge’ is a recurring viral hoax that has been perpetuated by local news stations and scared parents around the world. This entire cycle of shock, terror, and outrage about Momo even took place before, less than a year ago: Last summer, local news outlets across the country reported that the Momo challenge was spreading among teens via WhatsApp. Previously, rumors about the challenge spread throughout Latin America and Spanish-speaking countries.”

Google Blog: Helping parents have the tech talk with their kids

Google Blog: Helping parents have the tech talk with their kids. “In real life (or IRL, as my son reminds me) I work hard to ensure my child is safe, confident, and kind. And whether he’s chatting with friends, doing homework or playing games, I want to make sure the same is true whenever he’s online. To make that happen, it’s up to me to have the right conversations and provide the right tools to guide him on making smart choices, no matter where he is. However, parents often feel less tech savvy than their kids.”

Google Blog: Helping children in the Arab world be safe online explorers

Google Blog: Helping children in the Arab world be safe online explorers. “Be Internet Awesome—our digital safety and citizenship program for children—is now available to more than 400 million Arabic speakers as Abtal Al Internet. The program is designed in a way that simplifies the world of internet safety and digital citizenship in a language children feel comfortable with.”