How to protect your child online

by Lauren Abbott

Not talking to strangers and no sharing of personal details are two valuable lessons for children when it comes to internet safety but what else can parents do to protect their children online?

Claire Lilley, head of child safety online at the NSPCC says that one of the most important lessons parents can teach children is that anything they share online can be made public.

But managing a child’s privacy settings on a phone, tablet or computer is a very practical way of taking that conversation one step further.

There are many dangers lurking online

There are many dangers lurking online

She explained: "Even if your child knows they shouldn't share personal information with strangers, if settings aren't secure, then they may be giving away more than they realise, leaving themselves vulnerable.

“It's worth viewing the sites and games they use with them and starting a discussion about them.”

Parents may find that they need to deactivate GPS on mobile device, or switch settings on games like Minecraft so that they can only be played against friends.

New apps like ooVoo default their settings to public so simple moves to change this can make a massive difference.

Claire added: "It can be tricky to navigate the minefield of social networks, apps and games that young people use, but our Net Aware guide looks at 60 of these sites and is packed with straightforward advice for parents.

“By keeping your own knowledge up-to-date, you'll be in the best position to help your children use the internet safely.”

More information is available at http://www.net-aware.org.uk

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