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Actress who was almost ‘lured’ teams with expert to teach internet safety

Sparked into action by her own experience where she was almost lured into danger, professional actress and former Miss Italy World Finalist Theresa Longo has partnered with internet safety consultant and Matt Richardson, to launch “Project Playbook”.

The two hope to bring their specialized program to Prince Edward County schools next year. They launched their ‘Playbook’ of sound advice and practical tips for staying safe online, at a Belleville school late last week. Topics include cyberbullying, sexting, luring, why people become susceptible online, and are balanced with advice for maintaining a positive online presence using concepts for “online language” and advice for building confidence and maintaining a positive self image.

A Peterborough native, Longo has appeared in feature films and television shows such as Baroness Von Sketch, Imposters, American Gods and Designated Survior. At 30, she considers herself technologically savvy, but was almost tricked with the promise of a movie deal.

“I have worked in the film and television industry for half of my life. I have befriended and worked with talented stars in the industry, playing lead roles and securing lead roles in feature film and commercials.” But last year, she was almost lured to Atlanta, Georgia on the promise of a movie deal.

“The predators worked on me for months, sending me gifts of clothing and shoes. Dutifully, I fulfilled my promotional obligations with respect to the clothing; however I was offered an even more lucrative “film deal” for a weekend. I almost went to Atlanta, but my due diligence paid off and I realized a day before the flight that the “movie deal” in Atlanta wasn’t a real opportunity. I had almost been lured.”

The two developed Project Playbook to educate and empower young people about tricky people on the internet and how to stay safe online.

“While it is important to follow your dreams to the fullest, your safety and wellbeing is paramount to any material success. Project Playbook provides additional tools and knowledge to be more aware of your surroundings while making informed decisions with your personal best interests in mind. Project Playbook can be applied to every area of your life.”

Longo opened the seminar for students with inspiring tales of her career in the entertainment industry and inspired young imaginations with her personal and professional success stories.

Richardson, of Quinte West, has worked with the RCMP and various levels of the Canadian Government on several online initiatives, including privacy protection and safety.

He provided advice and tips for staying safe online and identifying potentially risky people and situations based on his experience teaching safety and his training in Open Source Intelligence and online investigations.

“Predators use the same tactics to identify, lure and groom victims as they always have only now technology provides them with new tools to identify and communicate with prospective victims,” said Richardson. “Project Playbook is deliberately built to address these realities, arming people of all ages to identify and address causal factors that can lead to victimization. The safety strategies introduced to the students today are practical and presented in an age appropriate, positive and empowering manner.”

More on Project Playbook on its Facebook page 

Filed Under: Arts & CultureNews from Everywhere Else

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