E-Safety - Older Children
This ‘Internet Matters’ video talks about what you can do at home to keep computers, tablets and phones safe and gives e-safety tips for parents of teens.
Teenagers are risk takers, it is in their nature and as parents this is something we are unable to stop. Instead it is important to get involved and play an active part in their online lives. Talk about issues that may occur online. Normalise the topics, talk about them openly and regularly. The internet and technology are something that your children are surrounded by and it is safer for you all to understand it.
It may feel embarrassing, but by making the subjects less secretive your child will be more likely to come to you for help and support if needed.
Some of the top issues young people can face online;
• Cyberbullying – bullying that happens online. This includes through social media platforms, apps and online games.
• Online grooming – it is easy for young people to have conversations online with people they don’t know.
• Easy access to inappropriate content
• Sending images and videos – it is important to understand that anything your child uploads or send to others, could be forwarded on to many other people. The images and videos could then spread online and they may not have control over who sees it, downloads it or watches it.
Talking with your child about staying safe online
4 key points
• People you don’t know are strangers – they may not be who they say they are
• Keep your personal information private. You don’t need to tell people your full name, age, school or address
• Trust your instinct - If your child gets an ‘uhoh’ feeling in their tummy about something that is happening online or on social media tell an adult that they trust or report it.
• Be nice to people, the same as you would in school or out and about
Staying Safe Online
It is important as a parent that you know how to keep your child safe online by blocking upsetting or harmful content they may see.
If you have specific concerns
Find the right time and place – make sure you are both comfortable and won’t be interrupted
Let your child know why you are worried – be honest and tell them what is worrying you and what you have noticed to make you feel worried about them
Give them time to talk, it can sometimes feel easier to fill the silence but your child may need time to open up
What if my child does not want to talk?
You can’t force them to talk but don’t give up. Try again at another time. Remember to be patient and ready to talk if they change their mind. Identify a safe person they could talk to that is not their parent – sometimes young people may find it easier to ask someone that isn’t you.
If you are concerned that your child is in immediate danger call 999.
Who Can Help?
You can also contact a member of the 0-19 Healthy Child Programme by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.
If you are 11-19 you can text ChatHealth on 07480635060 for confidential advice from one of our team.