Summer is here, and if you are a parent or guardian, this means that your children will be enjoying a long summer at home, possibly using technology such as phones, tablets and laptops.
Internet Matters, a not for profit e-safety group, has launched its #screensafe campaign to encourage parents to understand what their children are doing online. Check out the video below to find out more.
Free sunscreen and tips
Internet Matters will be at several family festivals throughout the summer, dishing out free sunscreen along with online safety tips.
Car-Fest North, July 28-30 at Bolesworth, Cheshire
Car-Fest South, August 25-27, Laverstoke Park Farm, Hampshire
Download the Internet Matters app
Internet Matters has created an e-safety app to help parents and children talk about online safety issues. It’s a free, fun and educational way to discuss important issues, designed to be used on a tablet and aimed at children aged 8-10.
The app includes nine categories, based around the e-safety issues facing children today: chatting, cyberbullying, privacy & theft, downloading, making friends, adult content, gaming, sharing and competitions and adverts.
Pick a category and answer questions, the app uses a split screen, so an adult and child can answer simultaneously. You can take the questions as many time as you want to get a high score and every few questions there’s a mini-game to play.
5 tips to keep your children safe online
1. Take an interest: Find out what websites they visit, what social networks they use and what games they play, so you can understand what they are doing online. If they mention an app or website you’ve not heard of, do some research and find out about it.
2. Set limits: Set a time limit for how long they can use devices during the day. Encourage them to use their phone or table in front of you, rather than alone in their bedroom, so you can keep an eye on them.
3. Talk to your child about Cyberbullying: Cyberbullying is a modern issue faced by children growing up today. Understand what it is and the signs to look out for. Discuss cyberbullying with your child – particularly if they are older, so they understand what it is and that they can always talk to you about it. Find out more.
4. Check privacy settings: If your child uses a social media, like Facebook and Instagram, make sure their privacy settings are at the strongest level. This means they have less chance of being contacted by strangers. Show them how to block users and encourage them not to share personal details. Find out more.
5. Use Parental Controls: With BT’s Parental Controls you can choose between Light, Moderate and Strict, which blocks content by category. Catagories include: Drugs, Nudity, Dating and even Social Networking. They are network-based, which means they cover all devices connected to a BT Hub. You can also choose the time the filters are in place, so you could add extra filters during those hours they should be concentrating on their homework. Find out more.
Do you have any tips to help keep kids safe online? Why not share them on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #screensafe
For a comprehensive and easy-to-use resource of the most up-to-date information for keeping your child safe online, check out Internet Matters