The White House cites CyberSmart! Curriculum as national cyber security resource for teachers

NEW YORK, NY – September 20, 2002 –

CyberSmart! and McGraw-Hill Education release "Internet Safety" and "Cyber Security" tips concurrent with White House announcement— supplements free CyberSmart! Curriculum available to schools nationwide

NEW YORK, NY – September 20, 2002 – The White House has cited The CyberSmart! School Program in its September 18th report, "The National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace." The document outlines ways that businesses, government and citizens can contribute to keeping cyberspace secure.

Concurrent with the White House announcement, The CyberSmart! School Program and McGraw-Hill Education have created two printable tip sheets that outline age-appropriate computer and Internet safety and security practices. The tips supplement the free CyberSmart! Curriculum, a comprehensive set of learning materials for K-8 teachers to introduce safe, responsible and effective computer and Internet use by students (see

"There is a significant need to teach safe and productive technology use by students," said Robert E. Evanson, President, McGraw-Hill Education. "We're pleased to be teaming up with CyberSmart! to offer these valuable security tips in addition to a comprehensive K-8 curriculum that provides teachers with the instructional materials required to teach these skills in the classroom."

"Teachers, parents and kids all play an important role to help keep the Internet a safe place for learning and communicating in the 21st century. These tips provide an excellent guide, said Jim Teicher, Executive Director of the CyberSmart! School Program. "Our goal is for students to embrace online behaviors and practices that are secure and effective so that online learning can achieve its potential."

"Internet Safety Tips for Elementary School Students" advise young people to extend positive citizenship skills into cyberspace and "obey the rules parents and schools make regarding computer use and Internet access." The tips reinforce the fact that "Cyber pals are strangers if you don't know them face-to-face," and urge children to immediately tell a responsible adult if they feel uncomfortable or get a mean message from anyone online.

The tips emphasize both safety and security precautions. "Cyber Security Tips for Teens, Teachers and Families" says "Be a responsible cyber citizen. If you use the Internet, you're a citizen of a global community – a cyber citizen. Use the Internet to share knowledge that makes people's lives better." Students are also instructed to protect their identity online, use hard-to-guess passwords and keep them private, and use anti-virus software, among other tips.

The tips, including 8.5 X 11" printable posters are available online at

About The CyberSmart! School Program

The CyberSmart! School Program empowers children to securely and responsibly take full advantage of computers and the Internet with school curriculum and teacher training. The free CyberSmart! Curriculum is co-published with Macmillan/McGraw-Hill. Visit for elementary and middle school curriculum that teaches the skills necessary for safe, responsible and effective computer and Internet use. For information about The CyberSmart! School Program visit About McGraw-Hill Education McGraw-Hill Education is part of The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP), a global information services provider meeting worldwide needs in the financial services, education and business information markets through leading brands such as Standard & Poor's and BusinessWeek. Founded in 1888, the Corporation has more than 350 offices in 33 countries. Sales in 2001 were $4.6 billion. Additional information is available at


The CyberSmart! School Program
Jim Teicher
Executive Director
McGraw-Hill Education
April Hattori



Share this information with teachers and parents. Keep this sheet near your computer.

  1. Be a responsible cyber citizen.
    If you use the Web, e-mail or chat then you are a cyber citizen. Just like citizens in your town, cyber citizens have responsibilities. You should keep safe and use good manners. You should obey laws and the rules your parents and schools make. Web sites, including music and videos on them, belong to different people and companies. If you want to copy or download something from the Internet, ask your teacher, librarian or parent to make sure the owner allows it.
  2. Cyberpals are always strangers.
    Cyberpals are strangers if you don't know them face-to-face. Even if you have great conversations and consider them your pals, they are strangers. Tell your parents if you want to get together with someone you "meet" online. If your parents agree to the meeting, then be sure it's in a public place and bring a responsible adult with you. If you get a mean message from anyone or feel uncomfortable tell a responsible adult right away.
  3. Keep personal information private in cyberspace.
    This includes your last name, picture, address, telephone number, parents' work address or phone number, or the name and location of your school. Only give this information out with your parents' permission.
  4. Use passwords that are hard to guess and keep them private.
    Don't write passwords down on small pieces of paper taped to your computer. Passwords that are easy to guess are a bad choice. In other words, if your name is "Dan" don't make your password "Dan." Change your passwords regularly.
  5. Turn off the Internet when it's not being used.
    It's possible for online thieves to use the Internet to steal information from your family computer. You should turn off the computer when you are finished using it. This saves energy, too.
  6. Talk to your family about protecting your home computer.
    Speak to your parents to make sure they use "anti-virus" software and a "firewall" to help protect your family computer. Anti-virus software protects your computer and files from being damaged and should be updated regularly. A firewall helps protect your computer and the information it contains—including your parent's credit card numbers, phone numbers and other personal information—from being stolen by online thieves.
  1. Be a responsible cyber citizen.
    If you use the Internet, you're a citizen of a global community—a cyber citizen. Just like being a citizen of your local community, being a cyber citizen has responsibilities. Use the Internet to share knowledge that makes people's lives better. Keep safe, use good manners and respect laws. Teens should trust their uncomfortable feelings and report inappropriate online activities to a trusted adult. Contact local police if necessary.
  2. Protect you and your family's identity.
    Don't give out any private identity information about yourself or any member of your family. Stop and think, "Am I being asked to give out information that reveals who I am or where I live?" You wouldn't give this kind of information out to a stranger you meet on the street. Nor should you in cyberspace. Even when you visit a well-known company's Web site, you should first check the site's privacy policy to be sure it won't redistribute your private information to others without your consent. Double-check with a parent before you give out any private identity information.
  3. Use hard-to-guess passwords and keep them private.
    Don't write passwords down on small pieces of paper taped to your computer. Passwords that are easy to guess are a bad choice. In other words, if your name is "Dan" don't make your password "Dan." Change your passwords regularly. Tell your family that combinations of letters, numbers and symbols are harder to crack than just words.
  4. Don't open e-mail from strangers and beware of file sharing.
    Delete e-mail from unknown sources. Watch out for files attached to e-mails, particularly those with a ".exe" extension—even if they're sent by people you know. Some files transport and distribute viruses and other programs that can permanently destroy files and damage computers and Web sites. Do not forward e-mail if you aren't completely sure that any attached files are safe. Exercise extreme caution if you allow others to store files on your computer.
  5. Don't mess with computers or files you don't own.
    It's against the law. Computer files and Web site contents are "property"—just like houses, cars, watches and other items people and companies own. Don't download any Web content that is copyright protected, including music, without permission from the publisher.
  6. Disconnect from the Internet when not in use.
    Disconnecting your computer from the Internet when you're not online lessens the chance that someone will be able to access your computer. Conserve energy and turn your computer off when not in use.
  7. Use anti-virus software.
    Make sure you update your anti-virus software frequently. All popular anti-virus software can be updated easily online.
  8. Back up your computer regularly.
    Help your family back up all household computers onto external media such as CDs or diskettes.
  9. Verify software security settings and install security updates.

    Web browsers and other Internet applications commonly contain security settings or preferences that should be fine-tuned to maximize the security of your computer and its contents.

    Security flaws are regularly found in operating systems and application software. Publishers release "patches" that you should install to correct the flaw on your own computer. It's a good idea to periodically check for security updates on the publisher's Web site for all the software you own.
  10. Use a firewall.
    Install firewalls for your family—it's not difficult. A firewall helps prevent hackers from breaking into your computer or the computers that belong to your family. Firewalls help prevent thieves from stealing and using private information including your phone number, which may be stored on a family computer.