Insafe Training Meeting in Cyprus

The Insafe Network of Safer Internet Centres organized a successful training meeting in Larnaca, Cyprus on April 20-21, 2016. With the participation of more than 130 participants from the Safer Internet Centres across Europe, including the Cyprus Safer Internet Center ‘CyberEthics’, the training which is held on a biannual base focused on the impact of technology, internet as well as online games on the health and wellbeing of children and young people.

The selection of this particular topic was prompted by the fact that children and young people start using technology at an ever younger age making it essential to the Insafe network to explore and exchange ideas on the potential implications of this trend on the end users. Throughout the meeting, the participants attended a series of workshops and lectures giving them the unique opportunity for a comprehensive and broad understanding of the various challenges and opportunities arising from the use of online games by children. The training meeting involved among others a speech from Dr. Richard Graham, an Adolescent Psychiatrist from the UK, who talked about the online vulnerability of young people with mental disabilities as well as a workshop delivered by Thomas Gaon, a French clinical psychologist, who presented his research findings concerning the effects of the excessive use of online games by children.

Following the recent adoption of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) by the European Parliament, the participants had further the opportunity to receive up to date information from experts on topics related to the protection of personal data online. In particular, Max Schrems, an Austrian activist and lawyer, talked about his legal fight against Facebook for privacy violation and in particular for the transfer of personal data from the EU to the US National Security Agency (NSA) as part of the NSA's PRISM programme, while a representative from the Data Protection Commissioner of Cyprus expanded on the broader context of the European Regulation on personal data.

In addition, the training meeting served as a platform for the exchange of ideas and best practices amongst the representatives of the Safer Internet Centres across Europe who willingly shared their experiences, challenges and opportunities associated with their vivid efforts to create a better internet for kids. In this line, the Cyprus Neuroscience & Technology Institute acting as the coordinator of the Cyprus Safer Internet Center ‘CyberEthics’ took the initiative of interviewing the interested participants who were willing to share their views on the vision, the challenges and the opportunities of the Insafe Network. The interviews are video recorded and will be uploaded on the website of ‘CyberEthics’ and also be accessible through the IdeaPrism Mob App.

Following the successful completion of the Training Meeting, the Insafe Coordination Team thanked the Cyprus Safer Internet Center ‘CyberEthics’ for all of their help and support in ensuring that the meeting would run smoothly.