Computer caution needed

COMPUTERS and especially the internet pose one of the greatest dilemmas for parents in the 21st century.On the one hand the net is a wonderful educational tool and a great way for youngsters to communicate with their friends.

COMPUTERS and especially the internet pose one of the greatest dilemmas for parents in the 21st century.

On the one hand the net is a wonderful educational tool and a great way for youngsters to communicate with their friends.

However there are real dangers from perverts like Jamie Taylor who use the world wide web to abuse youngsters and drag them into their own sick fantasies.

On this occasion Taylor's activities were foiled by the sensible measures taken by his victim's mother to monitor her daughter's computer - but not every parent will know how to set up such a system.


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This case will set alarm bells ringing in homes across the area - today many teenagers have computers in their rooms which they use for playing games, researching school work, and keeping in touch with their perfectly innocent friends.

It is impossible for most parents to monitor every message that comes in or out of the computer - and many youngsters trying to assert their own independence would be very hostile to such monitoring.

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But they need to know of the dangers that can be lurking when they are in contact with people they only know through the web.

Parents need to be aware of which sites their children are visiting, they need to know something of the people who are in most regular contact with their youngster.

Computers and the internet should not be regarded as something dangerous and sinister. It is a world of information and discovery . . . but all parents need to be aware that the pitfalls that can exist in cyberspace.

SUFFOLK police had to spend almost £220,000 on interpreters last year because of the large number of foreign nationals who were involved in criminal investigations.

Of course not all of these people were suspects. Many were witnesses or victims of crime. And whatever their status in any investigation, everyone involved in the legal process has the right to understand what is happening - and to be understood.

If a British national was caught up in the legal process in Poland or Portugal, people in this country would expect them to have the right to understand what was happening to them through an interpreter.

For those living long-term in this country resources need to be channelled into enabling them to learn English, but for those who struggle with the language interpreters will always be needed -whatever the cost.

UPPER Brook Street is one of Ipswich's main shopping streets, but the number of empty shops there now gives it a very run-down appearance.

For nearly two decades there has been talk of building a new shopping centre fronting on to the street - first called the Cloisters and more recently the Mint Quarter.

The hope of a big new development must not simply lead to delay after delay in trying to find new occupants for the units that have become empty.

It would be dreadful if Upper Brook Street were to face a similar fate to Upper Orwell Street which became notorious for its empty shops which eventually had to be demolished.

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