How do I keep my children safe online?
Here are some steps you can take to keep your children safe online:
Monitor their internet use and educate them about online dangers.
Set clear rules and consequences for breaking them.
Use parental controls and filters on devices and internet services.
Encourage open communication with your children about their online experiences.
Teach children to never share personal information or meet in person with someone they've met online.
Stay informed about the latest online trends and apps.
What are the online dangers facing children?
Here are some of the online dangers facing children:
- Exposure to inappropriate content
- Online predators
- Addiction to technology and social media
- Phishing scams and identity theft
- Unauthorised sharing of personal information
- Inappropriate online behaviour or sexting
- Addiction to online gaming
- Online harassment and hate speech.
Cyberbullying: Children can be bullied, threatened, or humiliated online by peers, making it a constant source of stress and anxiety.
Exposure to inappropriate content: Children can accidentally or intentionally come across explicit or harmful content online, such as violence, hate speech, or adult material.
Online predators: Children can be targeted by individuals who use the internet to lure and harm them, either through trickery or coercion.
Addiction to technology and social media: Children can become addicted to the constant stimulation and validation provided by social media and other online platforms, leading to problems with attention, sleep, and self-esteem.
Phishing scams and identity theft: Children can be tricked into revealing personal information, passwords, or financial data to online fraudsters.
Unauthorised sharing of personal information: Children can accidentally or unknowingly share too much personal information online, putting themselves at risk of exploitation or identity theft.
Inappropriate online behaviour or sexting: Children can engage in risky or illegal behaviour online, such as sending explicit images or engaging in cybersex.
Addiction to online gaming: Children can become addicted to online gaming, leading to problems with time management, sleep, and socialisation.
Online harassment and hate speech: Children can be targeted with hate speech or harassment online, which can harm their self-esteem and well-being.
How do I combat these online dangers?
Here are some steps you can take to combat the online dangers facing children:
- Educate children about safe and responsible online behaviour.
- Set clear rules and consequences for breaking them.
- Use parental controls and filters to restrict access to inappropriate content and limit screen time.
- Monitor your child's online activity and social media accounts.
- Encourage open communication with your child about their online experiences.
- Teach children to never share personal information or meet in person with someone they've met online.
- Discuss the dangers of cyberbullying, sexting, and online harassment.
- Stay informed about the latest online trends and apps.
- Report any illegal or harmful online activity to the authorities or to the platform where it occurred.
- Encourage a healthy balance of online and offline activities.
Here are some online safety resources available in the UK:
UK Safer Internet Centre: offers advice and resources on internet safety for children and young people.
NSPCC: provides information and support on how to keep children safe online, as well as a helpline for reporting concerns.
Childnet International: a non-profit organisation dedicated to promoting the safe and responsible use of technology by children.
CEOP (Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre): a UK law enforcement agency that investigates online child abuse and provides resources for keeping children safe online.
Internet Matters: a non-profit organisation that provides advice and support to parents on internet safety for children.
Parent Info: provides expert information to parents and carers about online safety, along with tools and resources to support them.
Here are the website addresses for the online safety resources in the UK: