October 29, 2019  |  By:   |  Press Releases  |  

Three Catholic Schools honored with Cyber Crime Challenge Award

The Archdiocese of Los Angeles and the U.S. Attorney’s Office and FBI, along with a coalition of law enforcement agencies, child advocacy groups, and private entities, hosted yesterday the 11th Annual Cyber Crime Prevention Symposium, a day-long seminar for more than 400 educators, parents, and middle and high school students about a wide array of information on cyber safety, technology crime and digital reputation.

The Cyber Crime Safety Challenge awards were presented at the Symposium to the winning schools from last year’s contest. The Technology and Research Award was presented to Our Lady of Refuge School in Long Beach. St. Charles Borromeo School in North Hollywood received the Impact Award and the Creativity Award went to St. Thomas More School in Alhambra.

“The Archdiocese of Los Angeles is proud to be a partner in this ongoing and collaborative effort to keep young people safe online – we are especially grateful that students in our schools are taking what they learn at the symposium and transforming that knowledge into creative and impactful programs they then deliver at their parishes and schools,” said Heather T. Banis, Ph.D., Victims Assistance Ministry Coordinator for the Archdiocese.

The Symposium addressed a wide range of cybercrime topics with law enforcement and community speakers conducting age-appropriate interactive discussions on issues including smartphone safety, online behavior, online exploitation, harassment and peer pressure of children and teens, digital reputation, cyberbullying, internet dangers, and sextortion.

“Cyberspace has become a dangerous place for adults and children alike. It is incumbent on law enforcement to provide the community with the necessary skills to stay safe in this online world,” said United States Attorney Nick Hanna. “This important Symposium plays a vital role in presenting a variety of relevant approaches and tactics that will guide children and adults to safer online behavior.”

“Say ‘no’ to anyone who pressures you online for sexual images or information about yourself, and say something to a trusted adult if your information has been compromised,” said Paul Delacourt, the Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office. “We urge parents to monitor their child’s activity online, discuss the speed with which information spreads on the Internet, and ensure awareness of the life-altering consequences of making the wrong choices. Our annual Cyber Symposium in Los Angeles provides us an opportunity to teach hundreds of kids about the latest dangers targeting them online so that they can serve as ambassadors in their communities and help us prevent the ability of sexual predators to operate in cyberspace.”

The Cybercrime Prevention Symposium was hosted this year by the Archdiocese. The planning committee also includes representatives from Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center, the Anti-Defamation League, Fox Entertainment Group, The Walt Disney Co. and Warner Bros. Entertainment.

The Archdiocese of Los Angeles is the largest Archdiocese in the United States with approximately five million Catholics. For the latest news, events and to subscribe for media alerts visit media.la-archdiocese.org. Follow us using @LACatholics on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Video archives and footage of Masses celebrated by Archbishop José H. Gomez are also available.


PHOTO CAPTION: Auxiliary Bishop Marc V. Trudeau for the San Pedro Pastoral Region of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles with the winners of the Cyber Crime Challenge Impact Award from St. Charles Borromeo School in North Hollywood.