Using the internet, either at school or home, has become part of
everyday life for children and young people in today’s world.
Your children will, if they haven’t already, get access to the
internet. While the web can provide endless amounts of fun,
entertainment and useful information, it’s also a gateway to
explicit material and communication with strangers.
In this film a teenager
who was threatened and manipulated by a man online speaks out about
Sadly, bullying isn’t just confined to the school
playground. Cyberbullying, using the internet or a mobile phone to
send or post cruel text or images, also exists.
children go out to play we want to know where they are going. We
take a very close interest. Using the internet safely requires
Child Exploitation and Online Protection
Just like other forms of bullying, cyberbullying is a way of
intentionally hurting the victim. However because it doesn’t take
place in person it’s not restricted to a particular time or place
and can happen by e-mail or on messenger, forum or social
The internet remains a great tool to help
children explore and make friends but its anonymity makes it almost
impossible to know exactly who your child is talking to.
While the majority of new acquaintances will be trustworthy it’s
a sad fact that the web provides paedophiles with the opportunity
to interact with your child.
Grooming is the term
used to describe inappropriate behaviour online that puts a child
at risk. It’s when actions are taken to befriend a child and form a
trusting relationship, often with the intent to commit a sexual
offence against that child. Some abusers will pose as children
online and make arrangements to meet them.
The Child Exploitation and Online Protection
Centre (CEOP) is
part of UK police and works to make the internet a safer place for
children by tracking and bringing offenders to account.
CEOP also works with children to highlight the dangers of the
internet through their educational campaign Thinkuknow.
We understand this information is both shocking and worrying for
parents. It’s not our intention to scare but to emphasise the
importance of talking to your children and keeping a close eye on
their use of the internet.
Like learning to
cross the road, online safety skills are skills for life.
Child Exploitation and Online Protection
We've put together a list of tips to help you and your
children remain safe surfers:
- Monitor the sites your children are visiting by glancing over
their shoulder and checking the history folder once they have
- Set up the family computer in a public area of the house such
as the living room rather than a bedroom.
- Remember anybody can be anybody on the internet. Don’t take
everything someone tells you or your child as the truth.
- Make sure your children understand they should never arrange to
meet with someone they meet through the internet.
- Think about buying special software that restricts access to
adult websites and any other web pages you would rather your child
did not see. You can purchase this software at most PC
- Explain the danger of giving out personal details to your
children. Make sure they understand never to give out their
address, phone number of school name to anyone they talk to
- Learn the language of chat rooms so you can understand what
your child has been talking about online and show as much interest
in their chat room friends as their real life friends.
- Go online with your children as often as you can.
This is by no means a complete list but highlights the main
precautions you should take.
For more help
For more advice try visiting these websites:
Think U Know - offers parents,
teachers and young people latest information on popular sites,
what's good, what's not and what you can do about it.
Get Safe Onine - gives
computer users advice to help them use the internet
confidently, safely and securely.
Chat Danger – how to keep safe
Stop it Now! - aims to
prevent child sexual abuse by raising awareness and encouraging
early recognition of the problem by abusers themselves
and those close to them.
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