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MISS AMERICA 2007 LAUREN NELSON and SYMANTEC partner to promote internet safety


Miss America 2007 Lauren Nelson and Symantec’s Internet Safety Advocate, Marian Merritt, Educate Parents and Kids Through Symantec’s Connected and Protected Child Safety Initiative

CUPERTINO, Calif.– Symantec, the leader in Internet security, today launched the company’s nationwide “Connected and Protected Child Safety Initiative” in partnership with Miss America 2007 Lauren Nelson, whose personal platform is protecting children online. Efforts for the initiative commence this June, which has been declared “National Internet Safety Month” by the U.S. Senate.

Miss America 2007 Lauren Nelson will work in partnership with Symantec Internet Safety Advocate Marian Merritt to raise awareness of Internet safety issues. As part of the Connected and Protected Child Safety Initiative, the pair will travel across the United States to educate children, parents and educators on how to be, and how to raise, better cyber-citizens. In addition, This Wednesday, June 20, Miss Nelson will award the Internet Keep Safe Coalition award to Senator Larry Craig (R-ID) and Congressman John Dingell (D-MI) for their outstanding contribution to the protection of children online.

Miss America 2007 Lauren Nelson personally knows the threats the Internet can pose and believes strongly about encouraging children to be safer online: “When I was 13, I experienced the potential dangers of unsafe Internet use. Some friends and I made the mistake of giving our names, ages and locations to someone online who we later discovered was a sexual predator. As a result, we received inappropriate photographs from this person, and although the situation was defused without further incident, not all kids are as lucky. That’s why I feel an obligation as Miss America to help children avoid dangerous situations online.”

“Symantec is thrilled Miss America 2007 Lauren Nelson has made Internet safety her personal cause. Her own experience gives her firsthand perspective on the real-life issues facing today’s connected children,” said Marian Merritt, Symantec’s Internet Safety Advocate. “We are committed to working with Lauren and our other valued partners to protect children when they are online.”

According to a June 2007 Symantec poll conducted by Harris Interactive®, nearly nine in ten parents¹ (88 percent) express concern about keeping their child safe when he/she is online and about three in four (76 percent) are specifically concerned about their child being approached with inappropriate content or solicitations online.

Symantec aims to narrow the gap between parents who have little to no familiarity with the Internet and their cyber-savvy children by offering practical advice and resources for families and educators. The initiative includes several elements:

* The Norton Family Resource Center – A family-focused Web site ( that offers tips, resources and information on a broad array of Internet security topics.
* The Family Online Safety Guide – A free, offline educational workbook packed with tips for keeping children safe on the Internet categorized by age or topic; families and educators can request the free kit online at the Norton Family Resource Center Web site.
* Public Service Campaign – Featuring Miss America 2007 Lauren Nelson, the nationwide television campaign will reach consumers directly with the message of Internet safety and will rollout this fall.

Symantec is also an official sponsor of the Internet Keep Safe Coalition ( , a non-profit organization comprised of governors and/or first spouses committed to helping parents and educators prepare children to use the Internet safely. Symantec and iKeepSafe have teamed to create a series of online tutorials and other resources syndicated online and made available freely to businesses, educators and community-based organizations.

This summer, Symantec and iKeepSafe are taking the initiative on the road with a nationwide Norton Connected and Protected mobile tour, an Internet safety classroom on wheels boasting 21 computers manned by a knowledgeable staff ready to answer questions about Internet safety. As part of the tour, Symantec and iKeepSafe will host state- and nation-wide town halls and present elected officials and other notables with awards for their efforts in the area of Internet safety. The Norton Connected and Protected Tour will stop at schools, camps, community centers and more, and consumers can visit the Norton Family Resource Center Web site ( to see when it will come to their town.


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