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ePrivacy Exchanged by Kids: Online security has to be worked with young people and not imposed by adults

To help children, adolescents and young adults to be safer on the Internet, the Portuguese Society's Portuguese Chapter and the MiudosSegurosNa.Net project teamed up to create the ePrivacy Changed By Kids initiative, officially launched on January 28, Data Protection.

Traditionally, this is a topic that is worked from a top-down perspective, that is, from adults to young people, and that is something we want to change, said Tito de Morais, project coordinator and founder of the MiudosSegurosNa.Net Project, to SAPO TEK . According to the official, the initiative wants to work with young people and not for young people, in order to give them a greater voice in relation to their privacy and online safety, two issues that affect their present and their future.

EPrivacy Logo Exchanged by Midos Credits: ePrivacy Exchanged for Kids

At a time when the first access to technologies already begins before children learn to walk, the privacy and safety of the youngest in the online world has become increasingly important. There is an increasing pressure for young people to always be connected, to expose themselves and to present themselves properly to others, underlined Cristina Ponte, researcher at the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences and coordinator of the EU KIDS Online project, on Safer Internet Day in 2019.

The two-year project encompasses four strands, the first being the celebration of Data Protection Day. In addition to being a space for debate, the event serves as a launching pad for an annual competition for young people of all levels of education, explains Tito de Morais. The idea is to encourage students to "produce a whole range of awareness materials, such as posters and videos, about online privacy and security".

According to Tito de Morais, helping teachers, educators and cultural facilitators to work with young people is another of the project's priorities. Thus, a series of Internet Society materials were translated into Portuguese, including tutorials on privacy, human rights, the digital footprint and identity management.

The fourth key moment of the initiative arrives on May 30, in a ceremony where the best works produced will receive awards, and will also be disseminated in schools and in the locations where young people are inserted and even on social networks, explains the official. But making sure that the voice of the youngest is heard does not stop there. In 2021, the ePrivacy Exchanged For Kids project wants to make them stand out as speakers from different panels at the celebration of Data Protection Day.