Category: Parents/Carers

Keeping Kids Safe Online

Lockdown and long-lasting pandemic restrictions resulted in many
children and young people spending more time online than usual, increasing the risk that they might be targeted and exploited by online abusers.

Child Protection Committees Scotland’s Keeping Kids Safe Online campaign aims to encourage parents and carers to be curious and actively interested in what their children are doing online, and to learn how to help keep them safe from the dangers of online abuse or exploitation.

• many children have been online for longer during the pandemic so more children have been at risk of online abuse
• parents and carers can play a big part by helping keep their kids safe from online abuse and exploitation
• be curious and chatty with your children about their online lives
• it’s okay to ask about what your kids are doing online and who they are talking too
• don’t ask just once, keep being interested and curious, keep asking questions
• learn more about your kids’ online lives, ask them to show you how sites, apps and platforms work
• talk to your children who their online friends are, what they chat about and what information they share
• encourage your children to be careful about sharing too much information with someone they’ve never met
• face your own fears about the online world and find out more about how to keep your kids safe
• learn from the many existing toolkits and information sites about how to help protect your children from predatory people
• talk to your children about online risks as early as possible, even very young children can be targeted by online abusers
• just as you want to know where your children are going when they go out, you should ask them where they are going online and who they talking to
• if you are worried that your child is or has been a victim of online abuse or exploitation, take action immediately

Find out more here: 

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Protecting Children’s Privacy – A Guide for Parents, Carers and Educators

ComparitechprivacyProtecting Children’s Privacy – A Guide for Parents, Carers and Educators – a post by Paul Bischoff on the Comparitech site which sets out the concerns expressed by many parents and carers about the safety of their children online, and provides guidance, tips and advice about what parents can carers can do, including the nature of conversations with their children and practical steps which children and their parents and carers can take to adjust privacy settings in commonly used social media tools such as Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter. It also describes the steps to take on settings in mobile devices, as well as Internet browsers, and more, all designed to help children and their parents and carers be more in control of the information they share.

Your school can get your free education pack for Safer Internet Day 2016

SaferInternetDay16EdPacksClick here to get details of the Education Packs for Schools for Safer Internet Day 2016.  There are three packs: Primary (ages 3-11), Secondary (ages 11-19) and a pack for parents and carers. The packs are designed to help schools and organisations working with young people to plan and celebrate Safer Internet Day, 9 February 2016, under the theme ‘Play your part for a better internet’. Each pack contains a lesson plan, an assembly script, posters, drama activities and video content from SID TV. You can download the packs from the UK safer Internet Centre website by clicking on this link.

Had a new device for a present?

NewdevicepresentWhether it’s for a birthday or at Christmas time many children may receive a new device as a present. Click on this link to read about advice for parents (and their children) about how to ensure the device is set up to make use of the safety features. But also the post highlights how to ensure children are aware of costs of in-app purchases, and to give pointers for conversations and decisions as a family.

Teaching safer use of smartphone camera

SCparentsSCSchoolsLots of kids will get a new smartphone with a built-in camera at Christmas…
For parents, engaging with your kids can help build the confidence and resilience they need to cope. It allows them to chat more freely about the things they like on their phones, as well as things they don’t. For kids who need extra help with new technology, Parental Controls can also be useful.”

The ISPCC have put together the leaflets at the links below to help parents.
SelfieCop – flier for parents

SelfieCop – flier for schools


Digital Parenting Magazine

Digital_parenting_magazine4Digital Parenting – a magazine full of advice for parents/carers about mobile devices and the Internet and how to be better informed about keeping their children safe. Multiple copies of these magazine can be downloaded by schools for free, so every parent/carer can be given their own copy.

Past issues of the magazine can also be viewed online – these magazines are designed to help parents/carers keep their children safer using mobile technologies and online, and provide a great deal of information for parents/carers about a host of topics related to mobile phones and the Internet and their use by children and young people.​

Past issues:

Current Issue for ordering for schools:

Current issue to view online:



Don’t let reluctance to broach online safety leave children unprepared for online world

O2NSPCCEsafetyresourceO2 and NSPCC launch an online partnership to help parents/carers support their children online.

O2 and the NSPCC  announced an online safety partnership as new research reveals thousands of children are potentially missing out on vital online advice and support at a crucial time in their development.
The O2 and NSPCC press release reported that the YouGov survey of more than 2,000 parents of children aged 8 to 13 suggests a worrying ‘digital delay’ as parents may be postponing conversations with their kids about staying safe online. The findings reveal that although 91 per cent of eight year olds use the internet at least once a week, on average parents think that children should be at least nine before their parents tackle issues of online safety with them.*
The research, also highlights a contradiction in the way parents approach online and offline welfare and safety issues. On average, parents thought it was right to talk to kids about everyday ‘real world’ issues such as stranger danger and bullying from age seven. However, when it comes to similar issues online, such as chatting to strangers on the web or cyber-bullying, on average parents felt that these conversations could wait until their children are at least nine*.
To ensure parents can access the practical advice and support they need to help their children stay safe online, O2 and NSPCC have teamed up to launch a ground-breaking partnership which will provide free one-on-one expert technical advice to parents via a dedicated new helpline, as well as interactive workshops delivered in workplaces and schools up and down the country.
And, importantly for the hundreds of thousands of children that contact ChildLine every year – O2 will also zero-rate ChildLine online, making it free for children and young people to get the help and support they need – even if they don’t have credit on their mobile phones.
Ronan Dunne, O2 CEO said: “While the internet is driving economic growth and positively transforming the way we live and work, the simple truth is that, like the ‘offline’ world, the online world comes with risks attached. Risks that need to be acknowledged and faced. Although progress has been made in ensuring young people receive practical online safety advice, our research and experience also suggests that more needs to be done to help parents, particularly those who don’t feel as confident supporting their children in the fast-changing digital world.

“That’s why today we are launching an ambitious partnership with the NSPCC to give parents free expert personalised advice to build their digital competence to help keep their children safe online. It is our hope that this partnership will help parents and their families to make the most of the wonders of the web, safely.”

NSPCC chief executive, Peter Wanless said: “Sadly we know that children up and down the country are struggling because of difficult experiences online. Thousands of young people contact us about issues such as online grooming, cyber bullying and after viewing sites which encourage eating disorders, self-harm and suicide. We need to ensure they are equipped with the necessary skills to protect themselves.

“This is a 21st century problem that will not go away and we need a real focus on teaching young people about staying safe on the internet which, is why we are joining forces with O2. Together we want to help parents recognise that for their children there is often no distinction between the online and offline world. Through our new helpline, workshops and online hub we want to encourage parents to learn more about what they can do to help keep their children safe. We hope that this partnership is just the start and that others will follow suit.”
Baroness Joanna Shields, UK Minister for Internet Safety and Security, said: “Growing up has never been easy but today the virtual world presents a whole new set of risks which are all too unfamiliar to parents. The challenge of keeping children safe online requires the full support and cooperation of parents, industry, charities and the government. We welcome the NSPCC and O2 partnership which brings together experts on the technology our children use with those who understand the way they use it.
“Government takes safety online seriously and we are standing alongside parents to make sure the internet is safer for children to explore, learn and create fearlessly.”

When it comes to what’s behind the digital delay identified by the survey – a significant number of parents expressed concern about the emotional implications of talking to their kids about online safety before they’re ten years old:
• Of the parents who think children should be 10 years or older to initiate conversations about online safety, nearly four in ten parents (39%) felt they would be too young to understand the issue
• Just over a quarter (26 %) of these parents believe the nature of the conversation would scare or upset them too much.

Surprisingly, almost one in 10 (9%) admit they don’t see the need for parents to ever proactively talk about cyber bullying, and 11% don’t think parents should ever initiate a conversation about viewing age appropriate content online.

The study also highlighted that confidence in dealing with online issues could be key:
• Nearly a third (31%) of all parents admitted they would refer their child to another adult or sibling if they asked them questions about an issue they’d encountered online
• While one in six (16%) admitted they’re more confident giving advice to their child about staying safe in ‘real life’ compared to staying safe online.

Even though a quarter (26%) of those parents who acknowledge feeling less confident about staying safe online don’t believe they have the technical knowledge to give their child practical advice it’s clear from the survey that the current generation of digital natives genuinely value guidance from their parents. Of the 1,000 children surveyed whose parents had ever talked to them about online safety, nearly two thirds (60%) said that they had modified their online behaviour as a result.

The new partnership between O2 and the NSPCC is designed to give parents the tools, support and information they need to help their children explore the internet safely. The partnership includes:
• A dedicated new joint helpline designed to help parents to navigate the digital world safely. The free helpline will be staffed by NSPCC-trained O2 tech-experts who will be able to give parents the technical advice they need to get the most out of the internet, including how to set privacy settings and parental controls.
• Free interactive workshops in schools and workplaces from January 2016 to help parents brush up their digital skills and expertise. Run by O2 tech experts, and NSPCC staff, the workshops will equip and empower parents with the skills they need to have impactful conversations with their children about how to safe online.

For further information about the partnership or to sign up for one of the workshops, visit:

About the research
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total adult sample size was 20,014, of whom 2,009 were parents of children aged 8 to 13. Fieldwork was undertaken between 31st July – 13th August 2015. Total children’s sample size was 1,142 aged 8 to 13. Fieldwork was undertaken between 31st July – 7th August 2015. Both surveys were carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+) and all GB children (aged 8 to 13).

*Parents of 8-13 year olds were asked at what age they believed they should initiate conversations with their children about offline wellbeing and safety topics (road safety, stranger danger, sex education, how to stay safe from sexual abuse, friendship difficulties, dealing with death, watching age-inappropriate content on TV (e.g. pornography, violent videos/ games), body image and bullying) as well as online wellbeing and safety topics ( sharing personal information online, using webcams and online video chat safely, keeping internet settings secure, using location settings, viewing age-inappropriate content online (e.g. pornography, violent online videos/ games), creating social media profiles, talking or meeting strangers online, cyber-bullying and sexting). On average,
parents believed they should initiate conversations about these offline topics at the age of 6.51, and about these online topics at the age of 8.9.

The means did not include those that said ‘Not applicable – I don’t think parents should ever initiate a conversation with their children about this topic’.