With a surge in complaints of fake profile and defamation cases being filed with the cyber cell, in which victims as well as culprits were mostly schoolchildren, the Delhi Police has launched a cyber awareness and safety programme for school students.
The initiative was launched with a focus on creating awareness about risks of uninhibited exchange of information on internet, especially among minors. Dharmendra Kumar, special CP (crime), said, “Over 245 complaints of fake profile and 51 complaints of defamation were received in the cyber cell of the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) in 2012. Many of these victims were minors in the age group of 14-18.”
Investigation into the complaints revealed a complete lack of awareness about the pitfalls involved in internet usage. An inherent need was also felt to identify and create awareness in the vulnerable group.
SD Mishra, additional DCP (EOW), said they had a three-hour interactive session with students of class 9 and 10 of ASN Senior Secondary School at Mayur Vihar on Tuesday.
“A concerted beginning has been made at schools targeting the focussed groups of teachers, parents as well as children. We are also considering launching an exclusive helpline number for children that can be used in case of distress or emergency,” Mishra said adding they will cover most of the Delhi schools by April.
“The program will spread awareness among school administration and teachers so that they can ingrain safe habits in children. We will also appoint internet safety officers in schools by training designated teachers,” he added.