Internet safety advice

The internet is an integral part of children’s lives today. It opens up endless educational and social opportunities and gives them access to a whole new world of information and experiences.

To get the most out of the internet, children need to learn how to stay safe. And just as you taught them to cross the road safely, you can teach them lifelong online safety skills:

  • Help them understand what the risks are online and why they need to remain vigilant and cautious:
  • Some people lie online and are not who they say they are - and that is why children should never ever meet up with strangers they talk to online or give out their real name, email address or phone number
  • Emails from people they do not know should not be opened because they might contain something inappropriate or have a computer-damaging virus
  • Not all sites are fun and harmless – they might contain something disrespectful about people’s beliefs or images they would find distressing
  • Show them that they can talk to you or a trusted adult if something worries them
  • The internet world can often feel separate from the real world. Help them understand that they should behave online as they do offline and that nothing posted on the internet stays private - images, messages and videos can be changed, spread and distorted very quickly.
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The Signed Stories app is designed to be enjoyed independently by children as well as being a shared experience for family and friends.

There are settings for parents to turn off social media sharing options so children cannot access these networks. Children under 13 are banned from using the social networks Facebook and Twitter, and we advise that children over the age of 13 are supervised using these sites.

The Signed Stories app does not carry advertising.

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‘Zip it, Block it, Flag it’ – the ‘Green Cross Code’ for internet safety 

‘Zip it, Block it, Flag it’ is an online safety code, drawn up by the UK Council on Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS).

It’s designed to teach young people, and their parents and teachers three important skills to keep them safe online:

  • Zip it - keep your personal stuff private and think about what you say and do online
  • Block it - block people who send nasty messages and don’t open unknown links and attachments
  • Flag it - flag up with someone you trust if anything upsets you or if someone asks to meet you offline

Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown said: “We hope that ‘Zip it, Block it, Flag it’ will become as familiar to this generation as ‘Stop, Look and Listen’ did to the last.”

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