E-safety: where do we start?
Concerned about online grooming? Make a Report!
Are you worried about online sexual abuse or the way someone has been communicating with your child online? Are you concerned about online grooming or sexual behaviour online? If the answer is YES, Make a report to one of CEOP’s Child Protection Advisors.
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?
The ThinkuKnow website is really helpful and aims to make online parenting simple and offers many practical tips and simple guidance.
Looking after the digital wellbeing
Childnet International has produced guidance for parents and carers on looking after the digital wellbeing of children and young people, which you may find useful and want to share with your parents/carers and/or put on your school’s website. The guidance includes having an awareness of how being online can make children and young people feel, and how they can look after themselves and others when online. The guidance includes: age specific information for 3-7 year olds, 7-11 year olds, 11-14 year olds and 14-18 year olds, about how children and young people are interacting with the internet; top tips to support young people at this age; and ideas to help start a conversation about digital wellbeing.
The guidance can be accessed via https://www.saferinternet.org.uk/blog/digital-wellbeing-%E2%80%93-guidance-parents.
Social Networks Safeguarding Guidelines for parents
NSPCC’s Net Aware provides guidance to parents on social networking sites, apps and games which children use and how to keep their children safe in today’s digital world. It can be accessed via https://www.net-aware.org.uk/. Given that many such new sites constantly appear, this website can be quite useful to stay up to date and keep children safe.
Click on the titles below for more information.
- Talk to your child about what they’re up to online
Be a part of their online life; involve the whole family and show an interest. Find out what sites they visit and what they love about them, if they know you understand they are more likely to come to you if they have any problems.
- Watch Thinkuknow films and cartoons with your child
The Thinkuknow site has films, games and advice for children from five all the way to 16.
- Encourage your child to go online and explore!
There is a wealth of age-appropriate sites online for your children. Encourage them to use sites which are fun, educational and that will help them to develop online skills.
- Keep up-to-date with your child’s development online
Children grow up fast and they will be growing in confidence and learning new skills daily. It’s important that as your child learns more, so do you.
- Set boundaries in the online world just as you would in the real world
Think about what they might see, what they share, who they talk to and how long they spend online. It is important to discuss boundaries at a young age to develop the tools and skills children need to enjoy their time online.
- Keep all equipment that connects to the internet in a family space
For children of this age, it is important to keep internet use in family areas so you can see the sites your child is using and be there for them if they stumble across something they don’t want to see.
- Know what connects to the internet and how
Nowadays even the TV connects to the internet. Make sure you’re aware of which devices that your child uses connect to the internet, such as their phone or games console. Also, find out how they are accessing the internet – is it your connection, or a neighbour’s wifi? This will affect whether the safety setting you set are being applied.
- Use parental controls on devices that link to the internet
Such as the TV, laptops, computers, games consoles and mobile phones. Parental controls are not just about locking and blocking, they are a tool to help you set appropriate boundaries as your child grows and develops. They are not the answer to your child’s online safety, but they are a good start and they are not as difficult to install as you might think. Service providers are working hard to make them simple, effective and user friendly. Find your service provider and learn how to set your controls
If you have any concerns or would like to know more, please don’t hesitate to speak to us. You can find out more about how children use social media, the apps they use, the risks they face, how to use privacy settings, and advice and tips about how to talk to your children at: