We understand that it can seem like a daunting task to keep your child safe online, especially as access to the internet and online content is easier and faster than ever before, but we hope that the information below will help you as parents/carers to keep your children safe online.
Encourage your child to think carefully about the way they, and others behave online, and how they might deal with difficult situations.
- People may not always be who they say they are online: how can this create problems?
- Why is it unwise to meet anyone in the real world that you’ve only ever met online?
- Even if you think your messages are private, remember that words and images can always be captured and broadcast.
- People present themselves differently online - do they really look like that? Are they always having that good a time?
- Be aware that screens, and especially being anonymous, can lead people to say things they wouldn’t say to someone’s face.
- What does being a good friend and a likeable person online look like?
- There can be pressure to be part of a particular group online or to be seen to be following a certain set of ideas
- How can you take a step back and make your own decisions?
- You wouldn't give your personal information to a stranger on the street, but that is exactly what you could be doing by putting it on the internet.
- Communication - Having an open dialogue with your child and talking to them about their personal and online safety can be their greatest weapon against harm.
What can parents do?
'Be Internet Legends'
'Be Internet Legends' is an online initiative which helps children learn to be safe and confident explorers of the online world in a fun and interactive way.
It is very important that even once your child has become an 'Internet Legend' that the content they are accessing is monitored, appropriate and safe. Please click the image below to visit the site.
Children's Safeguarding Assurance Partnership (Previously Local Safeguarding Children Board)
The CSAP website has a dedicated online safety page for parents/carers which includes supporting information and guidance to support Children and Young People to stay safe online. Please click the image below to visit the site
Apps and Age Ratings
The below is a list of apps that your child may be accessing, but did you know that these apps allow them to chat to and in some cases video call strangers without restriction. Sometimes these apps look friendly and entice children in on the basis of making friends, but the age restrictions are either bypassed easily or don't exist.
Click on the app image below to visit the internatematters.org site which can provide you with advice and information surround social media and apps.
Age ratings can be tricky to navigate and whilst some games, fillms or tv shows may appear appropriate for your child, it is also important to adhere to these ratings to ensure your child is nor exposed to content unsuiaable for their age. Click here to see how age ratings can help you as a parent/carer,
Most streaming services such as Netflixs, Disney +, Prime Video and Now TV all have inbuilt parental controls which allow parents/carers to restict content to age appropriate limits.
Google, Apple and Microsoft all have family link applications which allow parents/carers to view activity reports, set screen limits and age controls and can all be installed for free.
For further information on how you can use parental controls please see the attached parental controls booklet. You can also visit Internet Matters.org where you can find advice on setting up parental controls for your child's specific device. Please click the image below to visit the site.
CEOP (Child Explotation and Online Protection)
CEOP is a command of the National Crime Agency and is dedicated to tackling the sexual abuse and exploitation of children and young people. CEOP helps children and young people under the age of 18 who have been forced or manipulated into taking part, or are being pressured to take part, in sexual activity of any kind. This can be both online and offline.
The CEOP Safety Centre offers information and advice for children and young people, parents and carers and professionals. You can visit the CEOP Safety Centre and make a report directly to CEOP by clicking the Click CEOP button.
Online bullying or other online concerns should not be reported to CEOP and children and young people should be directed to speak to an adult they trust, and/or referred to Childline, if they would like to speak to someone about how they are feeling.
Below you will find a whole host of useful documents containing links and content from a wide range of agencies and charities with online advice, videos and downloadable tool kits to help keep you and your children safe online.