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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Central District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, October 28, 2019

Law Enforcement Authorities to Host 11th Annual Cybercrime Prevention Symposium for Educators, Parents and Students

          LOS ANGELES – The United States Attorney’s Office, the FBI, and a coalition of law enforcement agencies and community organizations today are hosting the 11th Annual Cybercrime Prevention Symposium at the California Endowment in downtown Los Angeles. The day-long seminar for more than 400 educators, parents, and middle and high school students will present a wide array of information on cyber safety, technology crime and digital reputation.

          This year’s Symposium will address a wide range of cybercrime topics with law enforcement and community speakers conducting age-appropriate interactive discussions on issues including smartphone safety, online behavior, online exploitation, harassment and peer pressure of children and teens, digital reputation, cyberbullying, internet dangers, and sextortion.

          Highlights of today’s Symposium will include a collaborative presentation by students from the Theatre Department at California State University, Northridge called “Improvising Online,” and the traditional lunchtime appearance of surprise celebrity guests from Disney television programs.

          “Cyberspace has become a dangerous place for adults and children alike. It is incumbent on law enforcement to provide the community with the necessary skills to stay safe in this online world,” said United States Attorney Nick Hanna. “This important Symposium plays a vital role in presenting a variety of relevant approaches and tactics that will guide children and adults to safer online behavior.”

          “Say ‘no’ to anyone who pressures you online for sexual images or information about yourself, and say something to a trusted adult if your information has been compromised,” said Paul Delacourt, the Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office. “We urge parents to monitor their child’s activity online, discuss the speed with which information spreads on the Internet, and ensure awareness of the life-altering consequences of making the wrong choices. Our annual Cyber Symposium in Los Angeles provides us an opportunity to teach hundreds of kids about the latest dangers targeting them online so that they can serve as ambassadors in their communities and help us prevent the ability of sexual predators to operate in cyberspace.”

          Cybercrime Safety Challenge 2018-2019 awards will be presented at the Symposium to the winning schools from last year’s contest. The Technology and Research Award will be presented to Our Lady of Refuge School in Long Beach. The Impact Award will be given to St. Charles Borromeo School in North Hollywood, and the Creativity Award will be awarded to St. Thomas More School in Alhambra.

          “The Archdiocese of L.A. is proud to be a partner in this ongoing and collaborative effort to keep young people safe online – we are especially grateful that students in our schools are taking what they learn at the symposium and transforming that knowledge into creative and impactful programs they then deliver at their parishes and schools,” said Heather T. Banis, Victims Assistance Ministry Coordinator for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

          Student teams from each of the schools attending this year’s Symposium will be invited to participate in the 9th Annual Cyber safety Challenge. This contest asks students to develop a cyber safety program at their respective schools to educate the entire student body on the various risks associated with cybercrime. The contest promotes good cyber etiquette by challenging students to engage in creating the cyber safety programs. Students participating in this challenge will have their contest entries judged by a panel of experts, and the winning school will be announced in June 2020.

          “With the ever emerging new frontiers of technology can also come peril,” said Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer. “My office and our law enforcement partners continue to work tirelessly to keep our kids safe when they are online.”

          Coming together under the umbrella of the Inter-Agency Council on Child Abuse and Neglect (ICAN), law enforcement agencies participating in this year’s Symposium include the United States Attorney’s Office, the FBI, the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and the Los Angeles Police Department - Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC).

          “Children growing up in this high tech age are being targeted by online predators at an alarmingly high rate,” said Deanne Tilton Durfee, Executive Director for the ICAN. “Each year, this Symposium provides participants with resources and tools to help children learn how to protect themselves and be safe in the cyber world, while enjoying all of the benefits of the fast-growing technologies.”

          The Cybercrime Prevention Symposium is hosted this year by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. The planning committee also includes representatives from Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center, the Anti-Defamation League, Fox Entertainment Group, The Walt Disney Co., and Warner Bros. Entertainment.

Contact: 
Tracy Webb Director of Community & Law Enforcement Outreach United States Attorney's Office Central District of California (Los Angeles) (213) 894-7419
Press Release Number: 
19-218
Updated October 28, 2019