Frosh Academy Hosts Cyber Safety Session

Jane Maiocco, Staff Writer

The freshmen class spent Wednesday Academy period on October 25 in the gym for a presentation about online safety. Dana Unger of Homeland Security and Lieutenant Brian South of the Moraga Police Department spoke to the group.

To Lieutenant South and Special Agent Unger, these presentations are important for different reasons, but each has the same goal – to prevent students from being in contact with predators on the internet.

According to Unger, “The reason we do the outreach is because we’ve come across so many cases with victims, more recently, under the age of 14, so we figure if we go out first and tell you guys about everything, maybe we can avoid having victims here at Campolindo.”

Lieutenant South said, “On the local police side, we have been really making a push to really increase the outreach and the education. Enforcement is one thing, and we continue to do that, but we want to get the education piece to try to prevent any issues from happening.”

The presentations discussed how to tell if someone contacting you online is dangerous.  Lieutenant South said, “A person that’s a stranger online is the same as if a stranger walked up to you on the street, so we’re trying to educate the kids to understand it’s the same thing.”

The presentation also focused on cyberbullying prevention. The guest speakers made sure to clarify that the consequences for cyberbullying are extreme and could result in criminal charges.

“I think that the seminar made a lot of people step back and think about their actions,” said freshman Emmi Hoogs.

Lieutenant South considered their visit to Campolindo successful. “If anybody leaves here and thinks about not participating in cyberbullying or decides not to post a picture… then that’s a win,” he said.