E-Safety is all about being safe in the online world. Although the internet is an amazing tool for learning and communication, many children and parents do not realise how dangerous a place the online world can be. It is important that all children think ‘SMART’ when using the internet and that their parents and teachers help them to be safe as well. E-Safety is not just about the internet and the computer: in today’s modern world, mobile phones, games consoles, cameras and televisions can also connect to the internet and can be dangerous if not used sensibly.
Why is it important to be E-Safe?
There are many dangers on the internet. Strangers, computer viruses, inappropriate content and adverts can all provide a danger to our children online. Our children need to be aware of how they can enjoy the internet without compromising their safety and how they can manage the dangers that they face online. Whether it is by ignoring or reporting strangers, using anti-virus software, being sensible with searches or ignoring SPAM e-mails, we need to ensure that our children know how to think SMART.
How do we think ‘SMART’ when online?
SMART stands for: Safe, Meeting, Accepting, Reliable, Tell.
SAFE: Be safe with what you post online. Make sure that you do not post personal information about yourself online.
MEETING: Never meet anybody from the online world that you don’t know in real life – they’re still a stranger.
ACCEPTING: Don’t accept emails, attachments and requests from people you don’t know. Block them or delete them.
RELIABLE: Always remember that people can lie online. They may not be reliable.
TELL: If something or someone is worrying you online, tell someone. You can tell a parent, a teacher, a friend or if it is serious you can tell the police or CEOP by using the Report Abuse button.
How can we stay E-safe on social networking sites?
First of all, primary school children should not be using Facebook, Twitter and other social media websites. These websites have age limits that should prevent children from Coleridge Primary School using them. However, some of the older children insist on using them so we need to ensure that they are safe when they use them. Here are some top tips for parents to ensure that their children are safe on social networking sites:
Make sure your child’s profile picture does not show their face. Anybody can see their profile picture so it needs to be safe. They could use a cartoon character, a badge/logo of their favourite team or band or another picture.
Lock the account: it only needs four clicks on Facebook. Visit the account settings, go to the privacy menu and set it so that only your child’s friends can see their profile. Don’t forget to confirm this by clicking OK. Sites like Facebook, Twitter and MSN start off with public profiles that any person in the world can view.
Check that your child only accepts people that they know on their friend or buddy list. Everybody on their friend list should be somebody that they know in real life.
Encourage your child to think about what they post onto their site. They should be careful about what comments and messages they post, the photos and videos that they post and the groups and games they join.
Ensure that children do not post personal information on their site. Personal information includes things like phone numbers, email addresses, addresses, places they go (and times they go there), bank details and any other information that they do not want people to know (i.e. secrets).