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Project iSmart to prevent young people from falling into cyber traps

     The New Territories South Regional Police Headquarters (NTS Police) has joined hands with the Youth Crime Prevention Centre of the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups (HKFYG) to launch a crime prevention programme, Project iSmart, which prevents young people from falling into cyber traps through education and early intervention.

     Jointly-organised by the Police and a non-governmental organisation, this is the first ever youth technology crime prevention programme adopting the early intervention approach to provide referral and counselling services for young people under the age of 24 who are technology crime victims or potential victims.

     The programme has two components, namely education and early intervention.

     Regarding education, short films based on real life stories produced by the NTS Police and HKFYG will be uploaded onto HKFYG¡¦s website, The Youth Law (, on a regular basis.  These short films will be broadcast in public places in the region as well to raise the awareness of young people to prevent such crimes through case studies in multi-media platform.  

     In view of the recent upward trend of blackmail cases relating to ¡¥naked chat¡¦, the first short film is about this topic to alert young people, who love to make friends on the Internet, to the possibility of falling into vice traps.

     The second component is early intervention.  As a result of inadequate public support for cyber crime victims, such victims are easy prey for vice traps as they have become pathological Internet users.  They are addicted to web surfing and sex.  As some of them might have a poor family relationship or social dysfunction, they only have their social life on the Internet and make virtual friends online.

     Project iSmart provides an early intervention service for this kind of young people under the age of 24.  Apart from responding to reports, the Police also take a proactive approach in their day-to-day duties to identify potential victims. After obtaining their consent, they will be referred to youth workers of the programme for preliminary assessment and follow-up actions.

     The referral service will be provided in Tsuen Wan District and Kwai Tsing District starting January 1, 2014 on a trial basis for six months. After review, the service might be extended to other Police districts in the region.

     The Police and the HKFYG urged young people to make friends on the Internet with the utmost caution, do not trust people in the cyber world and remain vigilant when meeting new friends. Before making sure of the identity and reliability of Internet acquaintance, do not disclose personal privacy, including video clips. Young people should stay away from naked chats, exchange of naked photos or clips to prevent from falling into vice traps. It is important to maintain good security settings for computers and mobile devices, and keep security and account passwords in safe custody to avoid becoming a victim.

Police Report No. 309

Ends/Monday, December 23, 2013
Issued at HKT 18:39


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