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Cyber Safety Resource Collection

The internet is an important resource for learning, communicating, and socializing. However, there can be challenges to staying safe online, and it is important to protect yourself to prevent negative experiences. This resource collection provides resources to help prepare individuals for how to stay safe online, and what to do if you have a negative experience.

These resources are intended to provide information and tips for cyber safety.  They are general resources to help inform how to stay safe online.

General Resources

FBI: Scams & Safety

On the Internet: Be Cautious When Connected

Everyday tasks—opening an email attachment, following a link in a text message, making an online purchase—can open you up to online criminals who want to harm your systems or steal from you. Preventing internet-enabled crimes and cyber intrusions requires each of us to be aware and on guard.

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Online Safety for Young People with Intellectual Disability

This research report discusses the experiences and challenges of engaging online by young people with an intellectual disability. It also discusses the concerns and awareness of their parents, carers and teachers in relation to keeping young people safe online and managing excessive technology use.

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For Parents & Caregivers

Online Safety For Teens and Adults with ASD

Online life is rife with danger, and it can be difficult for families and
professionals working with teens and adults with autism spectrum disorder
(ASD) to monitor the risks these individuals are taking in the virtual world.
Getting knowledgeable about internet safety and arming them against the
obvious dangers can build a foundation for the support they will need to
safely navigate online.

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Learning Disabilities, Autism and Internet Safety

All parents understand the importance of Internet safety. Our guide outlines some suggestions to help you limit the risk of your child having negative experiences online and understand what action can be taken if they do. This guide also suggests resources that will help your child get the most out of the Internet.

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Digital Wellness Lab

The Boston Children’s Hospital Digital Wellness Lab provides the research-based information and actionable guidance for children from birth to young adulthood.

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Family Online Safety Institute

The Family Online Safety Institute’s Good Digital Parenting resources provide parents and caregivers with the tools they need to confidently navigate the online world with their families.

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NetSmartz Resources for Parents, Educators and Communities

Free multimedia internet safety presentations tailored for specific audiences — parents and communities, teens, tweens, and younger children. Presentations are split up by topic and age.

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These resources are intended to provide information and tips on how to prevent negative experiences online.

Online Readiness Checklist

This resource, developed by ASERT and the Department of Human Services, provides a checklist to assess a person's readiness to participate in online communities.

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Cyber Safety Tips and Tools

These resources, developed by ASERT, provide tips and tools for individuals to help stay safe when using the internet and social media.

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Dating During a Pandemic

COVID-19 has changed the way we communicate and interact with others. This means the way we meet and get to know a potential romantic partner has also changed. This guide is designed to help self-advocates navigate dating during a pandemic.

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Online and Mobile Safety

Online and mobile safety resources for staying safe online.

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Internet Safety for Students and Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Webinar hosted by The Arc of New Jersey Family Institute and presented by Ashley Ritchey, Director of the New Jersey Self-Advocacy Project, attendees learned about internet safety and how to best support individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities on the internet.

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eSafety for Young People

Useful information to help you stay safe online.

Identifying and Avoiding Scams

The Worst Gift Card Scams Explained

Gift card scammers are raking in hundreds of millions of dollars, and trying to take YOUR MONEY! From anything like pretending to be the IRS, to accusing you of a crime and arresting you – here’s how gift card scams work, and how to avoid them.

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FBI - Romance Scams

FBI provides tips for avoiding romance scams online.

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How to Avoid a Scam- Consumer Advice (FTC)

Recognizing these common signs of a scam could help you avoid one.

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Gift Card Scams- Consumer Advice (FTC)

Someone might ask you to pay for something by putting money on a gift card, like a Google Play or iTunes card, and then giving them the numbers on the back of the card. If they ask you to do this, they’re trying to scam you. No real business or government agency will ever insist you pay them with a gift card. Anyone who demands to be paid with a gift card is a scammer.

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Norton: Online Scams: An overview + 20 internet scams to avoid in 2023

An overview of the top internet scams, how they work, the warning signs of a scam, and best practices for staying safe online.

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Dating Challenges on the Autism Spectrum

A blog post by an autistic adult about online dating with a warning about online scammers.

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How To Avoid Being Scammed Online: Internet Safety Against Fraud

Blog post on the best tips on how to avoid online scams, how to recognize scams, and what you can do to prevent them.

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These resources are designed to provide information and tips on what to do if you are a victim of or are accused of a cyber crime.

Reporting a Cyber Crime

If you or a child is a victim of online crime you should notify your local authorities and file a complaint with:

  • The Internet Crime Complaint Center: ic3.gov
  • If you think a site has collected information or marketed in a way that violates law, you can report it to the FTC: http://www.ftc.gov/complaint
  • If someone has had inappropriate contact with you, your child or another minor you know report it to https://report.cybertip.org/

Navigating the Adult Justice System

The following resources have been created by The Office of Developmental Programs in collaboration with William F. Ward, Retired Judge, Alleghany County, PA. These resources and self-guided Prezi presentation are intended for supporters to better understand the Pennsylvania justice process and identify places to engage, advocate, and intervene.

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Social Stories and Interactive Resources

Social Stories

Online Safety Social Story

This resource provides a visual guide for individuals with autism about how to be safe online.

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Interactive Resources

Be Internet Awesome

The Be Internet Awesome Family Guide gives families the tools and resources to learn about online safety and citizenship at home.

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FBI Safe Online Surfing

Online internet safety games for 4th grade through 8th grade.

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This information was developed by the Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training Collaborative (ASERT). For more information, please contact ASERT at 877-231-4244 or info@PAautism.org. ASERT is funded by the Bureau of Supports for Autism and Special Populations, PA Department of Human Services.