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Companies partner on digital safety initiative

Intel Security and Discovery Education join together for three-year digital safety education effort

digital-safetyIntel Security and Discovery Education are partnering on a three-year initiative, the Intel Security Digital Safety Program, designed to teach children to “Think Before You Link” and make safer decisions when using the internet.

The Intel Security Digital Safety Program will equip educators, students and parents with the tools they need to be confident, safe digital citizens.

“Teaching our kids to be safe and savvy online is one of the most important things we can be doing,” said Michelle Dennedy, chief privacy officer of McAfee. “If we’re successful in these kinds of endeavors, we’ll be contributing not only to kids’ personal well-being but also to their future education and careers – all of which will spur economic development.”

(Next page: Program resources and focus areas)

“We are delighted to begin this multi-year partnership with Intel Security, bringing the power of their expertise in cybersecurity to bear in creating first-of-its-kind digital-safety curricula,” said Bill Goodwyn, President and CEO of Discovery Education. “This engaging, new approach to security education will empower students to be responsible digital citizens, and provide them with the skills needed to recognize possible online threatening situations.”

The Intel Security Digital Safety Program will provide educators with standards-aligned resources, including self-paced lessons for use in the classroom to help engage students on timely, relevant topics like internet safety and security. At the conclusion of each module, students will receive cybersecurity certificate acknowledging they’ve completed the program and will act as a responsible cyber citizen. Additionally, parents can access the program’s at-home family resources to further reinforce the importance of online safety to their children.

Through Intel Security and Discovery Education’s partnership, the Intel Security Digital Safety Program offers resources designed to teach students ages 8-11 in the United States and Canada ways to keep personally identifiable information (PII) private online, create stronger passwords, and how to deal with cyberbullies. In the partnership’s second year, the program is planned to expand to reach ages 11-14, and in its third year the program is expected to expand globally to offer its resources in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

The first module will be focused on cyber safety and teaches children ways to keep their devices and personal information safe. According to the McAfee “2014 Teens and the Screen” study conducted by Intel Security June 3, 2014, 14 percent of youth between the ages of 10 and 18 have posted their home address online, while only 61 percent have enabled privacy settings on their social profiles. It’s more important than ever to educate children about online safety and why it’s important not to overshare and to pay attention to settings and profiles.

“In today’s digital age, it is crucial that students understand how to act responsibly and protect themselves online,” said Susan Holiday, principal at Gladys Noon Spellman Elementary School in Prince George’s County Public Schools, Md. “I am thrilled that Intel Security and Discovery Education have come together to provide educators with important resources to help them inform students about appropriate online behavior.”

Intel Security has already had huge success in equipping members of the community with some simple Internet safety tips. Since 2011, more than 250,000 school-aged children and parents worldwide participated in the McAfee Online Safety employee volunteer program (McAfee is now a part of Intel Security). With the support of Discovery Education, Intel Security hopes to make its curriculum available to millions of children, parents and educators around the globe.

As part of the program, educators and parents who pledge their commitment and spread the word about online safety have the opportunity to enter a national sweepstakes. Now through March 2015, eligible participants can enter for a chance to win cash prizes towards strengthening the digital safety and awareness programs at an elementary school of his/her choice. One grand prize winner will be awarded a $10,000 grant, one second place winner will be awarded a $5,000 grant, and ten honorable mention winners will be awarded a $1,000 grant each to benefit the elementary school of their choice. A special drawing will be held for educators in which ten winners will receive a trip to the 2015 ISTE conference in Philadelphia, an Asus Transformer Ultrabook, a two in one tablet/notebook, or McAfee LiveSafe™ service, a leading digital security solution for consumers.

The Intel Security Digital Safety Program launched during the fall policy conference of the Committee for Economic Development (CED) at the Willard Intercontinental Hotel in Washington, D.C. CED is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, business-led public policy organization that delivers well-researched analysis and reasoned solutions to the nation’s most critical issues.

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Material from a press release was used in this report.

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