Child safety online is one of our key concerns as a social media company. The internet is fraught with a range of dangers for both children and young adults and much of it stems from the use of social media.
As a social media company, we know all the ins and outs of social media, including all the legal and security implications. Combining this with a host of real-life case studies – we’ve got a shed-load of information for caring parents!
The channel is going to cover all the concerns raised from our survey including cyberbullying, security on platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, avoiding explicit material and screen-time. The channel is, of course, completely free to watch so please share it with all parents who have children who are online!
Social media safety survey
We’re always on the lookout for contributors to our short survey regarding any concerns they have with their children using social media.
No personal information is collected and any names used will be changed for privacy.
Simply use this link to access the survey.
How can my child be safer on Twitter?
Twitter is a very fast-paced public forum. Many parents aren’t aware that Twitter has no age restriction for young users and many have concerns surrounding their child’s profiles being public for all to see. We’ve directed a short video to address common parental concerns and some of the security features Twitter already has in place to ensure your child is safe online, the link to our channel is below.
Click here to see the Child Safety Online YouTube channel, which contains several videos we recorded about various elements of child safety.
The importance of safety on the Internet
I’m sure you’ve all stumbled upon several articles detailing the importance of staying safe on the internet, especially when it comes to using social networking sites. I know I have! There have been numerous people who have come into my school and given talks on watching what private information you people enter onto the likes of Facebook and Twitter. When you apply for jobs, one of the first ports of call for any employer is the Internet, where they can find out all about you before having met you. This is why it’s so important that you have secure privacy settings set in place, as you don’t know who may be accessing your information. It’s also important that you don’t put anything on the Internet that you wouldn’t be happy for a prospective employer to see. Ashley Payne was oblivious to the fact that a festive photo of her holding a pint of beer in one hand and a glass of red wine in the other, would lead her to lose her high school teaching job. This shows just how powerful the internet can be.
Another huge problem the internet poses is the safety for children. The average age of Facebook users continues to decrease, where children as young as 9 now have social media accounts. Many of these children are in breach of the regulations, which are set in place by the site to restrict access for users below the age of 13 years. Children that young are at a very vulnerable age, which makes them much easier targets for those using false identities. Ceop, a company that addresses internet safety, continues to highlight the importance of not uploading inappropriate pictures of the Internet. It needs to be made clear to youngsters that once something goes viral, it will exist in virtual space forever!
This video highlights the potential risks the Internet poses for young children:
Whilst the video presents an extreme case of Internet safety, it nevertheless possesses a very important message. These situations do happen and are best avoided. The right precautions and supervision need to be set in place to ensure your children are safe in the virtual world.
Raising awareness of Internet safety is also important when it comes to sharing personal details online. Personal information such as your address and your occupation are very often accessible on the web, where anyone can see it and use it as they please. A film which I find hilarious, Project X, shows how advertising a party and your address on Facebook can turn into a disaster.
You may have stumbled across a story a few months ago, where a 14 year old girl advertised her house party on Facebook. This naive act went on to result in £30,000 worth of destruction to her parents home. After 800 strangers turned up to her event, the evening quickly spiraled beyond her control. It’s news stories like this which emphasise the importance of regulating what information you post on the internet.
The risks the Internet poses, if regularly regulated and supervised, can be significantly reduced. Parents need to be made better aware of online risks and some of the ways they can regulate their children’s online experience.