Raising awareness of emerging online issues and current concerns.
Safer Internet Day
From cyberbullying to social networking to digital identity, Safer Internet Day each February aims to raise awareness of emerging online issues and current concerns. This year’s theme on 7 February: Want to talk about it? Making space for conversations about life online (see link below).
Childnet’s Safer Internet Day has become a landmark event in the online safety calendar. Starting as an initiative of the EU Safe Borders project in 2004 and taken up by the Insafe network in 2005, Safer Internet Day is now celebrated in approximately 180 countries and territories worldwide.
Learn about what is happening in your country from Childnet, explore student engagement activities from the International Taskforce on Child Protection, and use the questions outlined in this post as starting points for discussion with your students.
Here is another great article about Safer Internet Day and why it is so important to educate young people on the benefits and dangers of using the internet: https://www.saferinternetday.org/news/article?id=6999193
What Parents Need to Know about Social Media & Mental Health
An estimated one-third of children have a social media account, so it’s important that trusted adults know what content young people are consuming, what they’re posting and the interactions they’re having. On social media, it can be easy to go down a rabbit hole that isn’t beneficial to our wellbeing. As platforms grapple with managing ‘legal but harmful’ content, lives are being impacted – sometimes to tragic effect. We might be daunted by the scale of the tech giants and their content which enthrals young people, but we can still help children to be mindful of their mental wellness: recognising when something isn’t OK … and knowing what to do about content that upsets them. In the guide, you'll find tips such as how to hide content, setting daily limits and discussing what children have seen online.
Tips for Encouraging Open Discussions about Digital Lives
Most parents frequently chat with their child about how things are going at school or what’s happening in their friendship groups – but those discussions often doesn’t extend to youngsters’ online activities. In fact, National Online Safety conducted a recent survey which found that only slightly more than half (54%) of parents regularly talk to their children about staying safe online.
It can be an awkward topic to broach and, of course, it needs not to feel intrusive. However, just checking in with your child about their digital life can get them thinking about online safety and alert you to any issues they might be having. In support of Safer Internet Day 2023, our #WakeUpWednesday guide has some useful tips on potential ways to start those conversations. In the guide you'll find a number of useful tips such as being as honest as possible, discussing how misleading the online world can be and creating a ‘family agreement’.
12 Top Tips for Building Cyber Resilience at Home
In the last couple of decades, the volume of online traffic has increased exponentially – but, by and large, people’s awareness of the accompanying risks hasn’t grown along with it. To illustrate the scale of the issue, consider this: a report by the Internet Crime Complaint Centre found that, in the US during 2020, there was a successful cyber-attack every second. Yes: every second.
Criminals continue to find new and devious ways to attempt to hijack our online transactions and harvest our private information. To them, the smart devices that many of us now use as standard at home are simply a convenient back door into our lives – and our networks. Check out our #WakeUpWednesday guide for advice on beefing up your household’s cyber resilience. In the guide you'll find tips on a number of potential risks such as how to use a password manager, how to back up your data and how to check for breaches.
What Parents and Carers Need to Know about World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft originally launched way back in 2004, and since then the game has blossomed into a major entertainment property. It’s spawned spin-off novels, merchandise and even a Hollywood movie adaptation … but why are we still talking about it in 2023? World of Warcraft’s most recent iteration, Dragonflight, launched last November and marks the game’s ninth major expansion. This latest addition has attracted a whole host of lapsed players back to the game – as well as newcomers jumping into the realm of Azeroth for the first time. In the guide, you'll find tips on a number of potential risks such as the potential for online addiction, in-game purchases and simulated violence.
What Parents and Carers Need to Know About Twitter
Twitter is a social media network which allows users to post short messages (‘tweets’) of up to 280 characters. Tweets can consist of text, photos, videos, audio, links, polls and GIFs – often linked by hashtags if they share a common theme or message. Hashtags receiving high levels of interest are said to be ‘trending’. Twitter users can engage with other people’s posts by liking, retweeting (sharing) or tweeting back (commenting on). Since the entrepreneur Elon Musk acquired Twitter in 2022 for $44 billion, the platform has undergone several major changes. In the guide, you'll find tips on a number of potential risks such as trolls and bullying, fixation on view count and interaction with strangers.