ConnectSafely Hosts U.S. Safer Internet Day in Austin, TX on February 6th

ConnectSafely Hosts U.S. Safer Internet Day in Austin, TX on February 6th
FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn to keynote

PALO ALTO, CA — Jan 25, 2018, — ConnectSafely.org, the nonprofit organization dedicated to educating users of connected technology about safety, privacy and security, is hosting the official U.S. Safer Internet Day celebration in Austin, Texas on Tuesday, February 6th.

Safer Internet Day (#SID2018) is a global event, celebrated on the same day in more than 100 countries around the world. The event gained official recognition in the U.S. in 2012, with a joint agreement between the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the European Commission to work together to build a better internet for youth. ConnectSafely was appointed U.S. host in 2013. The 2018 theme is “Create, connect and share respect: A better internet starts with you.”

This year’s main event, which takes place at Austin’s Omni Hotel, brings together hundreds of Austin-area middle and high school students, policy makers and tech industry leaders to discuss internet safety. FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn will provide a keynote address. Other speakers include Austin Independent School District superintendent Paul Cruz, National PTA President James Accomando and executives from Google, Facebook, Trend Micro, After School, Roblox and other tech companies.

Speeches will be short to leave room for an interactive student activity lead by ConnectSafely K-12 education director and veteran educator Kerry Gallagher. Students will also have the opportunity to visit interactive exhibits such as a virtual reality anti-bullying experience.

“Safer Internet Day is an opportunity for people around the world to look for ways to make the online world not just safer, but better,” said ConnectSafely CEO Larry Magid. “ConnectSafely is proud to host the U.S. celebration in cooperation with public officials, tech companies, other nonprofits and, most important, students from Austin and across the country who will be joining us in person or via the stream.”

Ahead of her keynote, FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn (@MClyburnFCC) said “Ensuring the safety of our youth online is a top priority that requires a multi-pronged approach in the digital age. Support from parents, educators, tech companies, non-profits and regulators can ensure a more secure environment in which all students have access to high-speed broadband and the digital literacy skills needed for the jobs and opportunities of tomorrow.”

The event, which will be live streamed to schools across the country  (SaferInternetDay.us/livestream), runs from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. with doors opening at 9:30 a.m. Lunch and refreshments are provided.

In partnership with National PTA, ConnectSafely is also hosting a separate Safer Internet Day Family Night dinner event at Facebook’s Austin headquarters for elementary school students and their parents. This free event includes breakout sessions for parents and kids, hands-on activities and an appearance by “Clicky,” the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children’s “spokesrobot” who teaches kids about proper online behavior.

U.S. Safer Internet Day 2018 is a collaboration of tech companies, nonprofits and public agencies, including Google, Symantec/Lifelock, Facebook, Twitter, Trend Micro, Kik, NCTA – The Internet & Television Association, After School, Austin Independent School District, National PTA, National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, Common Sense Media, Committee for Children, Internet Education Foundation, National Cyber Security Alliance, Family Online Safety Institute and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The full agenda and more information is available at SaferInternetDay.us.

Media contact:
Hani Khan
ConnectSafely
650-346-7045
press (at) connectsafely.org

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