Students tackle internet safety

Students have been working on a project aimed at highlighting the dangers of face to face meetings with people encountered via the internet.

Their surveys around Chesterfield have shown that 94% of people think that there should be more awareness of the risks of social media and that 44% have little understanding of how to ensure safety while using such online sites.

The students will provide ‘safety zones’ within the town, mainly in cafes, which will be marked by a sticker.

They have produced leaflets entitled Safety.Net - 
5 Steps to Safety which are available in Chesterfield Tourist Information Centre and have ‘steps to safety’ posters in various locations around the town. The group is also aiming to set up a helpline.

An online music video which the group has recorded is available on the Facebook site Safety.Net.

In their recording, the students advise that a person going to meet someone face to face who they have previously communicated with via the internet should never go alone, should have a charged-up mobile phone and should meet their contact in a safety zone.

A spokesman for the group said: “We are proud to be leading a campaign for a much needed safety project that could go far.”

The students, who are aged 15 and 16 years, raised money for the initiative by packing bags at Marks and Spencer in Chesterfield last month.

They call their group Team Squadron and launched the social action project at part of the National Citizens Service.