In April, Muflehun ran the second “Internet Safety Workshop- What Parents Need to Knows” to an audience of 100 parents at ADAMS.
The Loudon County Sheriff’s Office and FBI WFO gave the first presentation, talking at length about youths’ online behavior, their tendency to be technologically savvier than their parents, and the pernicious threats they are vulnerable to online. The Deputy Sheriff and FBI Special Agent discussed ways children innocuously encounter unsavory material or are pursued by predators.
The FBI noted nearly two out of five missing children cases are connected to the Internet. Both the Deputy Sheriff and FBI Special Agent gave parents tips for discussing these issues with their children and steps to address their online activity at home, such as keeping tabs on all Internet-capable devices, using parental control software, and keeping the family computer in a visible spot in the house.
Tying into theme of online threats, NCTC and DHS CRCL spoke about another threat faced online: terrorist recruitment and radicalization. DHS CRCL spoke about its efforts to connect with communities through roundtables and address potential civil rights and civil liberties complaints logged with the government by citizens. NCTC discussed the new domestic strategy to prevent violent extremism by using a grass-roots approach, empowering communities and local partners to help address and prevent the threat. This included a discussion on how the strategy breaks into three parts: (1) community outreach and support; (2) increased training and information-sharing; and (3) countering the terrorist narrative while upholding our national values.
To conclude the event, Muflehun spoke about the importance of parents being aware about the online threats their children face and how they have a duty to speak honestly about the threat of radicalization to be able to confront it. Muflehun’s presentation focused on how youth can potentially fall into a path toward radicalization, one that progressively distorts an understanding of their religion. To help at-risk youth the community must understand the threat and step in early to provide the needed spiritual and social safety nets, to encourage youth to turn to trusted adults for questions or concerns, as opposed to merely searching for online answers . The presentation provided the congregation with a religious perspective for how to counter the terrorist ideology.
Please contact email@example.com if you would like to schedule a similar event for your community.
Other panelists included Gerald Gahima, Former Deputy Chief Justice to the Rwanda Supreme Court and David Peck, with 30 years of law enforcement experience. The panel was part of the “Counter Terrorism: Domestic and International” track of GovSec 2012 and moderated by Colonel (ret’d) Bob Peck of Partners International Foundation.
In October 2011, during “National Cyber Security Awareness Month” Muflehun organized and launched a new prevention program series “Internet Safety Workshop- What Parents Need to Know.” With the well attended pilot hosted at ADAMS, the objective was to raise awareness in parents regarding the full spectrum of internet based predators that target their families, both their physical bodies as well as their minds.
This was the pilot event for the series that will be replicated at mosques and community centers around the country. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to schedule a similar event for your community.
Comments from attendees:
“Excellent and informed session, it was an open eye for myself. Thanks a lot”
“Very good information. Very important and helpful”
“I hope that there will be a presentation for the youth on Fridays during youth programs on both issues: Internet + extremism”
“Thank you for doing this”
“Thank you for the service. It is a great presentation”
“I have great appreciation for such presentations.”
Suhail Khan, Board chairman of Muflehun spoke on a panel about “Integration as a National Security Asset” at a day long conference on “America the Inclusive: Building Robust Community and Interfaith Partnerships.” The event was hosted by Aspen Institute’s Justice and Society Program and the Interfaith Youth Core, led by Eboo Patel.
Keynote speakers at the event included the Honorable Jane Harman and Director Michael Leiter (NCTC). Several speakers made special mention of Imam Magid, Muflehun board member, for his work.