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E-Safety

At Hampton Vale we take the e-safety of our children every bit as importantly as their physical safety, whilst recognising that it is a complicated subject for lots of us to get our heads around. So, below provides sections on different aspects of e-safety giving you tips, advice and information about how to help your children stay safe on-line. To start with, it is helpful to try and narrow down your focus and concentrate on these four key steps:

1. Have ongoing conversations with your children about staying safe online

2. Use safety tools on social networks and other online services, eg Facebook privacy settings for over 13 year olds

3. Decide if you want to use parental controls on your home internet

4. Understand devices (tablets, PCs, mobiles) and the parental control tools they offer.

More information can be found at: http://www. saferinternet.org.uk. Our policy on E-Safety and a descriptions of websites in use can be downloaded and viewed below.

 

Staying Safe Online: Talk about their online world

We talk to children about crossing the road, bullying and speaking to strangers. But what about staying safe in the digital world? Having regular conversations about what your child is doing online - just like you would their day at school - is the best way to keep them safe. You’ll be able to spot any problems, encourage them to come to you if they’re worried and make sure they know what’s ok to share online - and what’s not.

Three tips to help start the conversation:
1. Explore sites and apps together and talk about any concerns
2. Ask your child if they know how to stay safe online
3. Talk about personal information and what to share online

 

Keeping your child safe online

Here we introduce 4 steps to help keep your child safe on-line which outline exactly what the potential risks of children using the Internet are. These will vary depending on your child’s age and online activities, but we have grouped them into these 4 categories.

Conduct: children may be at risk because of their own behaviour, for example, by sharing too much information. Children need to be aware of the impact that their online activity can have on both themselves and other people, and the digital footprint that they create on the internet. It’s easy to feel anonymous online and it’s important that children are aware of who is able to view, and potentially share, the information that they may have posted. When using the internet, it’s important to keep personal information safe and not share it with strangers. Discuss with your child the importance of reporting inappropriate conversations, messages, images and behaviours and how this can be done.

Content: age-inappropriate or unreliable content can be available to children. Some online content is not suitable for children and may be hurtful or harmful. This is true for content accessed and viewed via social networks, online games, blogs and websites. It’s important for children to consider the reliability of online material and be aware that it might not be true or written with a bias. Children may need your help as they begin to assess content in this way. There can be legal consequences for using or downloading copyrighted content, without seeking the author’s permission.

Contact: children can be contacted by bullies or people who groom or seek to abuse them. It is important for children to realise that new friends made online may not be who they say they are and that once a friend is added to an online account, you may be sharing your personal information with them. Regularly reviewing friends lists and removing unwanted contacts is a useful step. Privacy settings online may also allow you to customise the information that each friend is able to access. If you have concerns that your child is, or has been, the subject of inappropriate sexual contact or approach by another person, it’s vital that you report it to the police via the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (www.ceop.police.uk). If your child is the victim of cyberbullying, this can also be reported online and offline. Reinforce with your child the importance of telling a trusted adult straight away if someone is bullying them or making them feel uncomfortable, or if one of their friends is being bullied online.

Commercialism: young people can be unaware of hidden costs and advertising in apps, games and websites. Young people’s privacy and enjoyment online can sometimes be affected by advertising and marketing schemes, which can also mean inadvertently spending money online, for example within applications. Encourage your children to keep their personal information private, learn how to block both pop ups and spam emails, turn off in-app purchasing on devices where possible, and use a family email address when filling in online forms.

 

How to us safety tools on social networks and other online services

Most online services offer safety features that can help you manage access to age-inappropriate content, report concerns or protect privacy. It’s a good idea to think about the sites and services your family uses, and check out which features these sites have that might be helpful for you. Talk to your children and make sure they know how to use the tools on the sites and services they use. 

Here are some links to find out more about the safety feature of popular sites: 

 

Staying Safe Online

These are great tips for children help them stay safe online.

1) Don’t post any personal information online – like your address, email address or mobile number.
2) Think carefully before posting pictures or videos of yourself. Once you’ve put a picture of yourself online most people can see it and may be able to download it, it’s not just yours anymore.
3) Keep your privacy settings as high as possible
4) Never give out your passwords
5) Don’t befriend people you don’t know
6) Don’t meet up with people you’ve met online. Speak to your parent or carer about people suggesting you do
7) Remember that not everyone online is who they say they are
8) Think carefully about what you say before you post something online
9) Respect other people’s views, even if you don’t agree with someone else’s views doesn’t mean you need to be rude
10) If you see something online that makes you feel uncomfortable, unsafe or worried: leave the website, turn off your computer if you want to and tell a trusted adult immediately.

 

Parental Controls

Parental controls are an important way to keep your child safe online They can be used to block upsetting or harmful content, control in-app purchases or manage how long your child spends online. And the good news is parental controls are really easy to set up. Innocent searches sometimes reveal not so innocent results. So if you’re worried about what your child is searching for online, who they’re talking to or what they’re seeing, we can help. It’s simple to get started. And, along with talking to your child regularly, using parental controls is one of the best ways to help keep children safe online. You’ll find lots more information below – or give us a call on 0808 800 5002 to chat to one of our expert NSPCC and O2 advisors.

 

How to stand up to online bullying

You may come across things that are upsetting or shocking online. This could include videos of people being hurt, upset, or bullied and this might make you feel worried or helpless. But there are things you can do. Don’t share, comment or like the post. Some people share videos of bullying to let others know what’s happened or to catch the people doing the bullying. But it’s important you don’t post, share, comment or like videos of bullying because:

  • lt can be very upsetting and embarrassing for people to see videos of themselves being bullied online.
  • Some young people and adults find violent content very upsetting, so it’s important you don’t share videos which others will find worrying.
  • When you post a video online you can’t control who shares it or where it will end up. Videos can stay online permanently and impact the people who are in them. It may also stop the person being bullied from moving on.

Report it - if you see a video online which shows a young person being hurt or bullied you can report it on the site you see it on.

If you see a video that shows someone you know hurting someone or being bullied themselves, tell an adult you trust, like a parent or teacher. If you’re not sure who to tell, you can always speak to a Childline counsellor.

 

Peterborough Safeguarding Board online pupil survey 

Below is a summary of the findings from a Peterborough survey conducted last year. 

  • 80% of Y3-5 and 93% of Year 6 and above have their own device 
  • 66% of Y3-5 and 87% of Year 6 and above use social networking sites/apps 
  • 25% of both age groups suggested they have met someone in real life they only knew online 
  • 56% of Y3-5 and 24% of Year 6 and older do not use privacy settings on social networking sites or apps 
  • Year 6 and older: 33% felt sending intimate photos would not impact them later in life, 22% felt sending intimate photos was safe, 19% thought it was a sign of trust and 17% said it was harmless fun. 

Please talk to your children about these points. If you need advice, please do come in.

 

Online Safety While Playing Pokémon GO! 

Pokémon GO is all the rage and it’s brought kids, teens and adult game lovers outside to play, and exercise, all because of a simple and fun app on their smart phones. This is a good thing. 

At the very least those playing the game are putting in a lot of extra steps walking while breathing in fresh air. Others are running as their virtual reality leads them into the great outdoors. 

However, there have been reports of minor injuries due to users not paying attention to their surroundings while playing the game. It can be as simple spraining an ankle while losing your footing off a curb, or falling and landing on your elbow. 

There is a verified news story about two young men who fell off a small cliff and had to be rescued. To be clear, they climbed a fence to access an area not open to the public which led them into harms way. 

A young boy was playing Pokémon GO while riding his bike. Parents are diligent in telling their teens not to text and drive, now you’ll also need to warn them about the dangers of riding their bike one handed while searching for Pokémon on their phone with the other. 

Reviews of the game include comments that it’s very easy to get lost in the game to the point where kids, teens and adults alike, pay less and less attention to the ‘real’ world around them. 

Anything that encourages any member of society to ‘get active’ is indeed a positive thing, much like Wii Fit a few years ago. But when you go outside, don’t leave common sense at the door. 

Article from www.safesearchkids.com

 

What are the risks of online games? 

Children may view inappropriate or upsetting content if they play games that aren’t suitable for their age. This could include sexual or violent material. It might be in-game content or produced by other players. 

Some players can be abusive towards others or try to exclude them from the game. Some players may also hack another user’s account or try to steal and destroy their virtual possessions. This can be as upsetting for a young person as if it happened in real life. 

Children may play with adults they don’t know. People of all ages play games. Some adults may exploit this and try to build an emotional connection with a child for the purpose of grooming. 

Some children may find it hard to stop playing games or find that gaming is getting the way of them doing other activities. 

5 ways to help children play safe 

1. Check the game’s content. 
2. Know how to mute, block and report. 
3. Be Share Aware. 
4. Activate safety settings. 
5. Keep the conversation going.

Article from nspcc.org.uk