Did you know that April was Distracted Driving Awareness month? In an effort to bring you information about the latest digital dangers and trends, we have created an infographic that outlines the problem of distracted driving throughout the United States and then provides solutions that we gathered from industry leaders, experts and doctors.
Remember when we wrote about a new trend called swatting a few months back? Well it hasn't seemed to have slowed down at all.
If you remember, swatting is where pranksters call police to falsely report that a major crime is underway at some celebrity's home. Attempted kidnappings and shootings have been some of the most common crimes falsely reported. This weekend, "X-Factor" judge Simon Cowell was the latest celebrity to fall victim to this form of bullying. Other swatting victims include actor Ashton Kutcher and singers Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus. Because these people are well-known celebrities, there is usually a full tactical police response, which takes money and resources away from people who might actually need it.
SWAT-ting is a new trend that everyone is talking about. It also happens to be a nightmare for police departments around the nation. SWAT-ting is an attempt to fool an emergency service into dispatching an emergency response team. The callers use services like Spoofcard to disguise the origin of the prank call, change their voices and add background sound effects.
Aside from modeling good behavior by never using your own phone while driving, or having frequent conversations with your kids about the dangers of texting and driving, you can also use a mobile app like iZup to curb the temptation for your teen to text and drive and keep your kids safe.
The name iZup literally means “eyes up,” meaning that it keeps your teens from looking down at their phones when their focus needs to be on the road. iZup is compatible with Blackberry and Android, and it works using the phone's GPS.
Once the phone reaches 5 MPH (or another speed you select when you set up your account,) the app will automatically hold all incoming texts and calls. No outgoing texts or calls can be made, either, except for 911 or other numbers you authorize when you set up your account. It's a great app to enable parental controls in the car and help keep your kids safer
Currently, iZup is available for a subscription of $2.95 per month or $19.95 per year. You can put iZup on up to 5 phones with a family monthly subscription of $5.95 per month ($59.95 per year.)
Remember DARE? The kids safety program. If you're like me, you were probably part of the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) program when you were in elementary school. In fact, I can still recite the saying, “DARE to keep kids off drugs.” I think I even have a ruler printed with the slogan in a drawer somewhere.
Since 1983, DARE has partnered schools and law enforcement officials to teach kids how to avoid involvement with drugs, alcohol, gangs, and violence. In addition to the old standards, they have now begun addressing relatively new problems like cyberbullying, sexting, and online predators.