Internet Governance Forum 2014 tees up fresh look at protecting kids online

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Earlier this month, the Internet Governance Forum held its ninth annual meeting with a fresh focus on child online protection in a new session format devoted to “tangible outcomes” and “best practices.” Istanbul, Turkey was the host city for IGF 2014, entitled: “Connecting Continents for Enhanced Multi-Stakeholder Internet Governance.” The new session format—“Best Practices Forums” (BPF)—were piloted for five special topics, including child online protection (COP). All were aimed at Read more »

#MSFTCOSO POV: Making the world safer one hack at a time

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Since early July, I’ve been leading an internal team focused on revolutionizing “parental controls” for the 21st century household. Our project was part of Microsoft’s first-ever companywide Hackathon, where individuals and small teams put forth innovative project ideas, and employees from around the world volunteered their time, talent, skills and energy to give shape to the various concepts and visions. “Hack,” meaning “to hack something together” over the course of Read more »

#MSFTCOSO POV: From classroom to computer, students must be at the center of their learning environment

The digital world offers students an abundance of resources and unlimited learning potential. Our largely one-size-fits-all approach to education and technology in the U.S., however, doesn’t seem to be working for today’s digital youth. Moreover, resources are not applied equitably across schools and classrooms. To help address these challenges, The Aspen Institute established a Task Force on Learning and the Internet, to understand the ways in which young people learn Read more »

Microsoft asks people to “Do 1 Thing” to stay safer online for Safer Internet Day

To mark Safer Internet Day (SID) 2014, Microsoft asks people to “Do 1 Thing” to stay safer online and to make that one thing part of their daily digital routines. As part of this campaign, on Monday we’re launching a new interactive website Safer Online, where individuals can share their “Do1Thing” promise; learn what others are doing to help protect themselves online, and get instant tips to enhance and better Read more »

Online ‘safety’ as a state of being

We’re all very aware of people’s desires to be “safe” and “secure,” and to exist and engage in environments – both online and off – that are built on trust. To define these points as absolute states of being, however, is impractical and unrealistic. Rather, when it comes to life online, we should focus first on the almost-innumerable advantages of the Internet; realize the online world is not without risk, Read more »

US Attorneys General vow to protect kids

At the kickoff event for his year-long presidential initiative, “America’s Promise – Keeping Our Kids Safe,” the new leader of the U.S. National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) promised to help protect American youth in all aspects of their lives, including life online. “We need to focus on prevention,” NAAG president and Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen told an audience of about 120, including AGs, members of their staffs Read more »

New Microsoft Computing Safety Index report: US consumers need to focus on basic online safety

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Jacqueline Beauchere From antimalware solutions and automatic updates, to firewalls and strong passwords, Microsoft and the technology industry routinely stress that consumers should exercise basic “digital hygiene.” To some, these pieces of advice come as second nature. Most U.S. consumers, however, appear to ignore key technology tools that could help them stave off issues. New Microsoft research shows the majority of U.S. consumers are not leveraging some basic technology tools Read more »

‘Best policy’ to thwart online bullying? EC paper says raise awareness

Parents, educators, policymakers and young people worry that online bullying may increase in their communities. In speaking with these groups, however, concerns seem to stem mostly from fear that something might happen. This is due largely to a lack of awareness about many of the truths surrounding this critical issue. Thankfully, online bullying (also referred to as cyberbullying) is an actual concern for far fewer individuals, families and communities. Still, Read more »

The battle of the sexes; what new data reveal

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The one thing on which men and women always seem to agree is that they can rarely agree on anything. Asking directions may be the perfect example. Yet in today’s data-driven world, there is perhaps one social attitude that men and women have in common: Mobile phone habits can be very annoying, and people should exercise better etiquette. Results released today from Microsoft’s Safer Online poll identified five mobile pet Read more »

Get Safer Online – at Home and on the Go – on Safer Internet Day

Typically, when leave our homes, we lock our doors. We take this simple and, perhaps, habitual step to help protect our families and our belongings. Yet, when we go online, we don’t always take the same precautions with our personal information. Today, on Safer Internet Day (SID), we want to remind consumers the world over to promote responsible use of the Internet and mobile technology. Organized by Brussels-based Insafe and Read more »