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Special Notice regarding CYBER SECURITY (CGSD)

Date: Sep 20, 2017

Special Notice regarding CYBER SECURITY (CGSD)

Dear Parents,

It is with deep concern that we bring certain security issues to your notice so would greatly appreciate your patience in going through this notice in detail, understand its intended depth and take necessary measures where required.

A rising concern is a lot of risk-associated games in the internet, an example of which is The Blue Whale Game, also known as "Blue Whale Challenge", which is claimed to exist in several countries. The game reportedly consists of a series of tasks assigned to players by administrators over a 50-day period, with the final challenge requiring the player to commit SUICIDE. Regrettably, this is NOT the only game of its nature but one cited as an example here.

Quite a number of children (minors in age) are found to be engaged in social media sites (whatsapp, viber, instagram, snapchat, facebook, etc.) with adults without the consent or with partial consent and knowledge of the parents / guardians / caregivers. In this regard, would like to share thoughts which have been collected but totally echo our own.

3 Reasons why social media age restrictions matter:

According to The Social Age Study by knowthenet.org.uk, approximately 59% of children have already used a social network by the time they are 10. You don’t have to conduct a study to know that young kids under 13 are flocking to sites like Instagram, for example, to post and share photos, and to collect likes from their friends. Kids can easily make up fake birthdays and use their parents iTunes account to download Instagram to their own devices.

In short, as a society we have largely given up, giving age restrictions a collective shrug and “so what?” But, guess what? Age does matter, and here’s why:

1. Children's personal information is at risk.- The child's name, address, phone number, screen name, faces of friends and families, video or audio files, are all at risk of being accessible to third-party users / advertisers without the cyber law providing any protection if a fake date of birth has been used to create an account.

2. Children may find it difficult to make smart decisions online.- Just because kids seem tech-savvy at increasingly younger ages, doesn’t necessarily mean that their brains are developing at the same rate as their digital acumen. Research shows that children do not fully develop their cognitive structures that enable them to engage in ethical thinking. Yet young children are increasingly joining social networking sites, sometimes even putting themselves in harm’s way by becoming victims of online harassment, solicitation, and cyber-bullying before they are ready to respond appropriately.

3. Lying is just plain wrong.- Living in a civilized society means we have some implicit agreements: we take turns, play fair, stop at red lights. And we tell the truth. Sure, giving a fake birth-date to Facebook or instagram or snapchat seems like a harmless white lie, but it’s a lie nonetheless. I’d like to believe we can all agree that honesty and truthfulness, online and off, is of utmost importance.

In the pursuit of providing a safe society to our children, we are reaching out to you with our earnest request for you to monitor and regulate screen time of your child/children. In addition, please ensure that you are aware of the people in your child's friend list.

From the school's end, we have always instructed all our faculties/admins to refrain from engaging into any social media associations with existing students of CGS as it goes against school policy. You are kindly requested to immediately let the authority know in case of breaches, if any, so that we are able to resolve the matter to the benefit of our students.

 

Sincerely,

Asia Alam Chowdhury

Head of Primary &

Acting Head of Secondary