Keeping safe online this Safer Internet Day 2023
Tuesday 7th February is Safer Internet Day and this year the theme is ‘Want to talk about it? Making space for conversations about life online’. With a focus on the impact of the internet and online safety for children and young people, the day is to provide a platform for talking about how we use digital technology.
The younger generation have no experience of life before the internet, and it has become entwined into every minute of every day of our lives. But for all the powerful benefits the internet has brought us, it also has many safety issues surrounding it. Online issues could include bullying, exploitation, misinformation and gaming scams to name just a few. We look at some steps you can take to help keep your family safer online:
Open discussions about internet safety.
Technology moves at such a pace so it can be difficult to know where to start when speaking to your family about internet safety but talking regularly with your child is the greatest tool in helping to keep them safe online. Build conversations into everyday life so that you can understand what your child has seen and who they are talking to, and any worries or concerns they have. Chat to them about what they like to do online and remind them they shouldn’t share personal information with people they don’t know.
Parental controls and privacy settings
Help manage what your family sees and does online using parental controls and privacy settings. You can manage how your child spends time online and help keep them safe.
Device settings – manage things like location sharing, screen time and in-app purchases. Most tech and gaming companies have dedicated pages to support with setting these up.
App or game settings – in-app tools that can help to keep your child’s account private and manage who they’re talking to. You can normally find information on these in account settings or directly on the platforms website.
Mobile or network provider settings – help to manage browsing access and stop your child from visiting inappropriate sites or downloading apps that aren’t suitable. Contact your mobile or broadband provider for more information about setting this up.
Get advice from online safety experts.
The online world can be overwhelming so asking for help will give you peace of mind you are doing everything you can to keep your family safe. Speaking to your child’s teacher or another parent can give you some tips on how to start a conversation. Plus the NSPCC website https://www.nspcc.org.uk/keeping-children-safe/online-safety/ and the Childline website https://www.childline.org.uk/ have some invaluable resources.
For more information about Safer Internet Day and how to get involved, visit the UK Safer Internet Centre here> https://saferinternet.org.uk/safer-internet-day/safer-internet-day-2023. Alternatively you can talk to one of our team about how to keep safe online by calling our Head Office on 01905 21681.