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Facebook Unveils New Safety Resources for Teens

You don't have to be a tech whiz to use them

April 19, 2011|CNN

Parents, listen up. If you have questions or concerns about keeping your teens safe on Facebook, the site has unveiled new resources just for you, and you don't have to be a tech whiz to use them.

It's been a big question for Facebook. Among 600 million users how do you keep the youngest safe? Joe Sullivan, Facebook Chief Privacy Officer, says, "We have talked to parents about some of the key issues that they have, like should I be friends with my kid on Facebook? Should I require their password? How should talk to them about Facebook?"

So Tuesday the site rolled out a revamped family safety center, where parents can visit for tools and tips on safety and privacy, even if they don't have a profile of their own.

There's also a special section aimed at teachers, and Facebook says a downloadable guide to Facebook in the classroom is on the way as well.

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One internet safety expert says it shows a virtual community evolving and responding to real-world demands. Hemanshu Nigam, former MySpace Chief Security Officer and SSP Blue founder and internet security expert says, "When you create a platform where people come and they interact with each other, you are actually creating a real life community like a town, or a city."

That includes more education, and more policing.

The new features include an expansion of the site's social reporting tool, which will now allow users to flag offensive or inappropriate content on profiles, pages and in groups, not just to the site, but to a friend within their Facebook network as well.

Regardless of privacy and protection policies by Facebook and other social networking sites, it's parental involvement that can be most crucial. Nigam says, "Parents are the first line of defense when it comes to protecting their children and their teenagers."

To learn more about Facebook's Family Safety Center, click here.

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