CLEVELAND – School is back in session, kids are back in the classrooms, teachers are planning lessons. Along with the traditional school supplies like pencils and books students are using computers more than ever before. Computers are part of the classroom and most children are very computer savvy.
The 2013-2014 FBI Safe Online Surfing (FBI-SOS) Internet Challenge aims to keep their cyber-safety skills just as cutting edge. The SOS website is free. It is designed for students from third to eighth grades. Each grade has its own age-appropriate “island” where students learn key cyber security concepts through interactive content and games.
The topics, designed to meet state and federal Internet safety mandates, include cyber bullying, how to protect personal information, online predators, instant messaging, copyright and fair use, reporting, social networking, cell phone safety, and gaming safety according to the FBI.
The program is open to public and private schools and is designed to meet state and federal Internet safety mandates. The goal of the program is to provide students with knowledge about how to avoid dangerous situations on the Internet, specifically Internet predators.
Each month students from registered schools learn about Internet safety as they participate in online games and activities. Upon completion, the students take an online quiz to test their knowledge. At the end of each month, trophies are awarded to the schools with the highest scoring students on the FBI-SOS post-quiz.
Teachers who wish to participate in the Internet Challenge can sign up at https://sos.fbi.gov
Students receive an electronic token, pass code, from their teacher that enables them to take an exam for their respective grade-level. The tests are graded electronically, and the schools are ranked on a national leaderboard that is posted online.
At the end of each rating period, winning schools in small, medium, and large categories are recognized by the FBI and when possible are visited by an FBI agent from a local field office.