OnGuardOnline.gov Off to a Fast Start with Online Child Safety Campaign

More than 1 Million Copies of Net Cetera Booklet Distributed to Help Parents, Kids Navigate the Online World

For Release

The Federal Trade Commission today reported to Congress that it is getting the word out about Internet safety for children by aggressively promoting a new booklet, Net Cetera: Chatting with Kids About Being Online, to schools, police and sheriff’s departments, and PTAs nationwide.

Net Cetera explains to parents and their children how to deal with issues such as social networking, cyberbullying, using mobile phones safely, and protecting the family computer from badware. The booklet is practical, plain-language, and value-neutral, so all parents – regardless of whether they are technologically savvy – can use it to help their kids make better decisions about online behavior. It is the most recent addition to the OnGuardOnline.gov consumer education campaign, which helps people guard against Internet fraud, secure their computers, and protect their privacy.

“With more than a million copies distributed in just over four months, Net Cetera is a runaway hit,” said David Vladeck, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “It’s proof that people want to have continuing conversations with their kids about communicating online.”

The FTC created Net Cetera in response to a Congressional mandate in the Broadband Data Improvement Act, and has promoted it through the interagency OnGuardOnline.gov campaign. The campaign includes 13 other federal agencies as partners and centers on a Web site of the same name.

FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski, and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan unveiled Net Cetera at a Washington, DC, middle school in December 2009.

The report, Net Cetera, OnGuardOnline.gov’s Internet Safety Campaign for Children: A Report to Congress, and English and Spanish versions of the booklet are available at the FTC Web site and as a link to this press release. The Commission vote to approve the report was 4-0.

The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish, visit the FTC’s online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP 1 877-382-4357). The FTC enters complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 1,800 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad. The FTC’s Web site provides free information on a variety of consumer topics.

(Net Cetera NR.wpd)
(FTC File No. P105200)

Contact Information

MEDIA CONTACT:

Betsy Lordan
Office of Public Affairs
202-326-3707

STAFF CONTACT:

Nat Wood
Bureau of Consumer Protection
202-326-3407