San Diego City Mayor Dick Murphy accepts Cyber Safe City award from Susan Culler, vice president of development with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and Pam Portin, director of MSN Policy, at the San Diego Police Headquarters on May 9.
SAN DIEGO, May 9, 2003 — MSN®
and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC), one of the nation’s leading child advocacy groups, today named San Diego a Cyber Safe City — one of only six American cities to be so honored — and recognized local police officer Sgt. Dave Jones as a Cyber Safe City Hero for championing online safety in the community.
“San Diego is fast becoming America’s safest city because law enforcement, community members and specifically the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force have set a precedent for successfully helping make the Internet a safer place,”
Mayor Dick Murphy said.
“We’re thrilled our hard work and diligence in online safety have been recognized, and we hope our commitment to fighting cybercrime will serve as an example for communities nationwide.”
The Cyber Safe City designation is part of a nationwide initiative to recognize cities that are pioneering the drive to help keep our nation’s children safer online and to encourage other cities across America to follow the lead of these online safety role models. The Cyber Safe City program is also designed to provide resources to law-enforcement agencies, educators and families for online safety education in San Diego and throughout the United States. The education and training resources MSN and NCMEC are implementing locally are being made available nationally at http://www.staysafeonline.com/ .
San Diego and the other Cyber Safe Cities — New York; Naperville, Ill.; Dallas; Sioux Falls, S.D.; and Seattle — will receive the MSN/NCMEC Cyber Safe City award, along with additional resources and tools to help them continue their outstanding work in educating citizens about online safety.
“Our comprehensive program not only helps further San Diego’s commitment to protecting its residents online by providing resources and educational tools to law enforcement, but it offers national recognition for the great work San Diego is doing to promote a safer Internet experience,”
said Ernie Allen, co-founder and president of NCMEC.
When determining the six Cyber Safe Cities, San Diego stood out for its effort as part of the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, which brought together local law-enforcement personnel, government agencies and community members to focus on curbing Internet crime. The partnership formed between the ICAC Task Force, the Office of the District Attorney and law enforcement allows prosecutors to be closely involved in Task Force investigations. In addition, ICAC has established a speaker’s bureau, which conducts educational training to other law-enforcement officers and provides necessary resources and information about Internet crime and protection against online predators. San Diego prides itself for having trained approximately 2,200 officers through the San Diego Community College District so far.
“Our goal in creating the Cyber Safe City program is to recognize the great work and commitment to online safety made by San Diego and to encourage other cities to follow San Diego’s example,”
said Pam Portin, director of policy at MSN.
“As a world leader in Internet software and services, MSN is committed to creating software and providing resources that enable individuals and families to have a fun, useful and safe online experience.”
The Cyber Safe City tour kicked off May 1 in New York City, where MSN and NCMEC announced their partnership to recognize six cities for their outstanding work in online safety and to provide each city with additional tools and resources to help expand their online safety programs. To find out more about how to stay safe online and about the activities in each of the Cyber Safe Cities, law-enforcement personnel, educators, parents and kids are encouraged to visit http://www.staysafeonline.com/ .
About the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children is a 501(c)(3), nonprofit organization that works in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. NCMEC has access to both the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) and National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (NLETS). NCMEC operates the CyberTipline, an online mechanism to report child sexual exploitation such as online enticement of children for sex acts and child pornography. Mandated by the U.S. Congress in 1998, the CyberTipline has received over 120,000 reports leading to hundreds of arrests of child predators. Created in 1984, NCMEC has aided law-enforcement officials in the search for more than 89,000 missing children. More than 73,000 children have been recovered as a result. More information about NCMEC is available by calling (800) THE-LOST (843-5678) or visiting http://www.missingkids.com/ .
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