Internet safety – where do we start?
The internet has changed all of our lives, particularly our children’s. For parents and carers this opens up a whole new world of things to be aware of. For many of us, this can all be a bit too much.
You might be struggling to keep up with the things your child is doing online, you might wonder whether what they are doing is safe, and you might also be thinking how can I be as good a parent online as I am offline?
Even if the only search engine you use is a pair of binoculars, do not despair. Here you’ll find practical tips and simple guidance.
Information for children
Using the internet at home is different to using the internet at school. At school we have special filters that make searching for things safe and you may not have these on your home computers. Here are some ways to keep you safe on the internet.
Think SMART and follow these rules when using the internet (Taken from KidsSmart).
Keep safe by being careful not to give out personal information when you’re chatting or posting online. Personal information includes your email address, phone number and password.
Meeting someone you have only been in touch with online can be dangerous. Only do so with your parents’ or carers’ permission and even then only when they can be present. Remember online friends are still strangers even if you have been talking to them for a long time.
Accepting emails, IM messages, or opening files, pictures or texts from people you don’t know or trust can lead to problems – they may contain viruses or nasty messages!
Someone online might lie about who they are and information on the internet may not be true. Always check information with other websites, books or someone who knows. If you like chatting online it’s best to only chat to your real world friends and family
Tell your parent, carer or a trusted adult if someone or something makes you feel uncomfortable or worried, or if you or someone you know is being bullied online.
Child Safety Online:
A practical guide for parents and carers whose children are using social media.
Child Sexual Exploitation – Parents’ Awareness Day
Parents are being urged to familiarise themselves with the signs of child sexual exploitation (CSE) as part of the ‘It’s not okay’ campaign. CSE is a priority for all local safeguarding children boards in the region and the ‘It’s not okay’ website and campaign has been put together by Project Phoenix – a unique collaboration of public and third sector partners throughout Greater Manchester including Tameside Council.
An online question and answer session with a parent of a child who has experienced CSE will form part of a Child Sexual Exploitation Parents’ Awareness Day being held on 13 May. Parents can follow the session or ask questions via an anonymous online portal at www.itsnotokay.co.uk. There is also useful information on spotting the signs of CSE and getting help at www.itsnotokay.co.uk/parents/
The key message to remember is that child sexual exploitation is NEVER the young person’s fault. Abusers are very clever in the way they manipulate their victims. Parents can help support the #Itsnotokay campaign by following on social media – Facebook at www.facebook.com/notokaygm and Twitter www.twitter.com@notokaygm – and sharing the messages.
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