Rules for Keeping Safe Online
Keeping your children safe when they are online is not an easy task. As children get older, their computer ability will quickly match or exceed your own. Here is some plain and simple advice which can help. Nothing can protect you 100% – but this will give you a great start.
There are some really interesting things on the Internet but not everything is useful and safe. This means we have to be SMART when we are online. Make sure you and your children know the SMART rules and remember these tips.
Always ensure your child knows how to be careful when they are using the internet. It can help them to keep in touch with friends and help their education – but it can also cause harm – to them and to others.
Remember help is always available at school if your child is having any problems online. You or your child can talk to their teacher or another adult at school.
- SAFE– Staying safe involves being careful and not giving out your name, address, mobile phone no., school name or password to people online.
- MEETING someone you have only contacted online can be dangerous, they may not be telling the truth about who they are. Do not arrange to meet anyone you have met online.
- ACCEPTING e-mails or opening files from people you don’t know or trust can get you into trouble – they may contain viruses or nasty messages.
- RELIABLE– Some information you find on the Internet may not be correct.
- TELL your parent, carer, teacher or any trusted adult if someone or something makes you feel uncomfortable or worried, or if you or someone you know is being bullied online.
Keep the computer in the living room
Keeping the computer in a shared area of the house means you can keep an eye on how it is being used. As your children get older, use your own discretion to decide if the computer can be moved. Be especially wary of allowing younger children to use a laptop or ipad unsupervised or out of sight. If they have one, make sure the web filter is also installed.
Install a web filter protection system
A web filter watches every single page, image or media file that your computer requests from the internet. If it detects a request from a web site which is known to be of questionable origin, that page is blocked. Simple.
One product available is K9 Web Filter. This is a free application provided by a larger commercial company. They fund the free application by selling their commercial product to large organisations. The list of unsafe sites is automatically updated every day.
After installation, you simply state how well protected you want your computer to be. Any unsafe site, or image, is blocked automatically. If you need to view a site which K9 blocks, you just enter your parental password.
It’s quick, it’s easy, and most importantly, it is effective. It works with every version of Windows, and a Mac version is available, too.
Other people’s houses
No matter what you do to provide online protection in your own home, be aware that your children may well use a computer at someone else’s house. It may be worth asking other parents if they have done anything to address these issues.
Reporting concerns about child exploitation
If you or anyone you know is worried about Child Exploitation, Online Protection (CEOP) or anything related to Internet safety please click the link below which will take you to the CEOP reporting website:
Links to helpful websites on e-safety
The following links are to range of websites which will provide help and support for parents and children.
CEOP Reporting concerns about child exploitation
THINK YOU KNOW (5-7) Children's activities and information age 5 - 7
THINK YOU KNOW (8-10)Children's activities and information age 8 - 10
THINK YOU KNOW (11-13)Children's activities and information age 11 - 13
PARENT INFORMATION General advice and information about e-safety
PARENT ZONE General advice and information about e-safety
CHILDNETGeneral advice and information about e-safety
NSPCC NETAWAREHow to stay keep your child safe when using social media and online games
INTERNET MATTERSAdvice about controls and filters and different age groups’ online activity
BBC OWN ITVideo resources about e-safety
VIRGIN MEDIA - SWITCHED ON FAMILIESGeneral advice and information about e-safety
PARENT INFORMATIONVideo chatting: a guide for parents and carers of primary school age children