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Microsoft and KidZania join hands to ensure holistic cyber-physical safety of children
Microsoft is developing the technology and tools, establishing partnerships, providing safety-related education and guidance, and conducting research into people's behaviors online.
According to Dr. Jyoti Kapoor, Sr. Psychiatrist, Paras Hospitals, "As parents we need to be more attentive and alert about our child's surroundings both, in the cyber and physical worlds. We must watch out for behavioral change caused due to emotional or physical abuse, and we must adopt preventive measures. The most common warning signs of abuse in cyber as well as physical worlds manifest as signs of depression, anxiety, social isolation, nervousness and low self-esteem. Parents need to be very alert to read these signs and immediately take corrective measures. It is important that while we draw benefit from the immense potential of new technologies, we must also make use of all the security features available to make it a safe and pleasant experience."
To that end, Microsoft and KidZania have joined hands with Dr. Kapoor to create awareness about good practices for holistic and collaborative cyber-physical safety of children. Besides, this partnership is a result of Microsoft and KidZania sharing a common philosophy.
As such, Microsoft's mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. KidZania's vision is to ignite the hearts and minds of kids everywhere by empowering them to make the world a better place. Thus Microsoft and KidZania are now helping create protected cyber and physical spaces where children will be empowered to learn, be creative and achieve more.
For this Microsoft is taking a three-pronged approach. They are developing the technology and tools, establishing partnerships, providing safety-related education and guidance, and conducting research into people's behaviors online. As a crucial first step, Microsoft is encouraging the use of Microsoft Family Safety features and Windows 10 Parental Controls that can safeguard children in the cyber world.
Alok Lall, Partner Technology Lead, Microsoft India, believes, "The internet can be a wonderful educational tool as well a means of providing interactive and constructive leisure activities for children. However, most parents are rightly worried about some of the content their children may be exposed to on the web and want to keep them safe online. As a parent myself, I would encourage everyone to take advantage of the Microsoft Family features within Windows 10 to create a secure online environment."
KidZania has been pioneers in creating safe and interactive indoor theme parks across the world including India. The essence of their child-centered, role-play and reality-based activities lies in the fact that they have safety in-built into their designs, developments, and operations. KidZania has led the way in adopting practices like RFID Security Bracelets for children, No Touch Policy, CCTV Camera Coverage without Blind Spots, No Unaccompanied Adults Allowed Policy and much more.
Reiterating their commitment to being a safety leader, Viraj Jit Singh, Chief Marketing Officer, KidZania India, said, "KidZania has over 18 years of experience running safe and secure theme parks all over the world. Since inception in India, we have hosted more than 2.5 million visitors. While our safety measures are of international standards, there is a constant flow of learning through best practices from our 24 global centers. We constantly innovate and since technology plays an integral role in creating a safe and secure space for our visitors, we will reach out to partners who can help us explore the benefits of AI, IoT, cognitive services, and other Cloud-based services to provide seamless cyber-physical safety to our children."
To protect children from inappropriate content and secure the system from malware, Windows 10 Fall Creators Update has introduced new features in the Windows Defender Security Center that provide easy access to and integration with Parental Controls.
Microsoft Family also allows parents to insulate their children from inappropriate content strewn across the web. When parents add their child to the Microsoft Family and turn on activity reporting, they get weekly activity report emails that show a summary of their activity, including websites visited, games and apps used, terms searched for on search engines like Bing and how much screen time they had, even if they have logged in from a friend's house or any other screen.