Online Safety


Great for research
Cheap or free communication and collaboration
Easy to create and publish content and get it noticed
Great for children to develop further job skills as fun hobbies
Introduces children to the world of commerce and business
Encourages creativity and individualism
Chidren feel they have ‘ownership’ of the internet
Cyber bullying
Online privacy and personal information
Reputation management and ‘digital footprint’
Inappropriate material
Illegal downloads and copyright infringement
Spam, phishing, visuses and malware
Children lying about their age to ge onto social networking platforms with a 13+ age limit


The best outcome regarding e-safety incidents, cyber-bulling and online harassment with school-aged children is always to persuade the pupils to see the consequences of their actions and remove the material of their own accord.

Much better outcomes are seen when children decide for themselves what is and is not acceptable and self-regulate their actions. Schools and parents have a huge role in providing this guidance first, rather than imposing rigid rules and sanctions as an initial measure.

Under these child protection features, harassment and bullying reports go to the top of the queue for 13 to 16 year olds and material is more likely to be deleted by Facebook. Also, uninitiated contact by an adult who has no friends in common or other connections to a child will be automatically flagged by Facebook, and all chat, posts and messages will be monitored for an unspecified period – possibly up to six months. If there’s anything of concern it will get forwarded by Facebook to law enforcement. However, this only happens if the child is between 13 and 16 and has provided their correct age.



Time spent on the internet:

The estimated weekly time spent using the internet at home in 2013 increased with the age of the child: 6.7 hours for 5 to 7-year-olds, 9.2 hours for 8-11-year-olds and 17.0 hours for 12-15-year-olds. (Source: Ofcom).
As in 2012, 12-15-year-olds still spent as much time using the internet as watching television. (Source: Ofcom).
One in five 12-15s with a social networking site profile say they visit it more than 10 times a day. 85% claim to visit their profile at least once a day. (Source: Ofcom).
Children and social networking:

In 2013, 12-15s are less likely than in 2012 to say they have set up a social networking site profile (68% vs. 81%). Compared to 2012, there has been no change in the proportion of children aged 5-7 (2%) or, 8-11 (22%) with an active social networking site profile. (Source: Ofcom).
Nearly all 12-15s with a social networking site profile have one on Facebook, with growth in the use of Twitter since 2012. (Source: Ofcom).
75% of 8-15-year-olds lie about their age when signing up to Facebook. 50% of parents are aware of this. (Source: Stop web bullying).

Internet safety issues:

79% of children use the internet at home unsupervised. (Source: Childnet).
69% of young people say they don’t like their parents checking up on their online activities. (Source: Childnet).
49% of young people claim they have given private information to someone they have met online. (Source: NCH).
31% of 9-18-year-olds who use the internet at least once a week have received inappropriate, unwanted comments. (Source: NCH).
57% of child internet users have come into contact with inappropriate online material. (Source:NCH).
57% of child internet users have come into contact with inappropriate online material. (Source:NCH).
1 in 12 children have met face-to-face with someone they first met online. (Source: NCH).
Advertising and information:

40% of 9-18-year-olds trust most of the information on the internet. (Source: NCH).
8-11-year-olds (70%) are more likely than 12-15-year-olds (48%) to believe that the information on sites such as Wikipedia is all or mostly true. (Source: Ofcom).
73% of online adverts are not clearly labelled as such. (Source: Childnet).

Key tips:

Know what your children are doing online.
Be aware who your children are talking to online.
Keep computer and internet access in a shared family room.

Explain why your children should not give out personal details online.
Explain to your child that nothing is private on the internet – anything can be copied, whether it be private pictures, comments or messages.
Point out that your child should always consider what an employer or partner might be able to find about them on Google in 5 to 10 years’ time.
Avoid replying to junk, spam or phishing emails, or opening attachments which might contain viruses or malware.
Teach your children to be sceptical about information they read online.
Ensure your child does not meet up with online friends unless accompanied by a parent/carer.
Creating a positive environment where your child can be open and inquisitive and feel confident discussing their online experiences, whether positive or negative.
Teach your children how to block and report any behaviour or content