Below are our top tips for keeping children safe online, and some recommended websites where you can find more information.
As well as educating your child about the internet, you may also wish to use the parental controls provided in most web browsers and search engines, and by Internet Service Providers. These can help you restrict access to particular websites, set time limits and monitor where a child is going.
You can set your search engine to filter out sites that are unsuitable for children. To find out how to do this, type the name of your search engine plus the words 'safe search' into your search engine's search box.
Most web browsers (such as Internet Explorer and Safari) have parental controls that enable you to block material that is unsuitable for children. To find out more, click on your browser's Help menu, and search for 'parental controls'.
All the major Internet Service Providers (ISPs) provide parental control packages - for more information, contact your ISP. You can also buy or download parental control software - just ensure you look for reputable companies and check customer reviews.
Helping your child learn safe internet practices will also help to keep your computer safe from viruses, spyware, adware and other online threats. These are small programs that can seriously damage your computer. You can pick up a virus or other malware from an infected USB memory stick, from an email attachment or from an infected website. Until your child understands the dangers, we recommend you set these rules:
It is also best to be cautious opening attachments even from people you do know. Some viruses are programmed to send emails to all the contacts in a person's address book - so a friend can send you an infected attachment without even knowing.
It is essential to have anti-virus software on your computer and to keep it regularly updated. You can find more information on the websites listed below.
For more information on keeping children safe online, and keeping your computer secure, visit the following websites.
Thinkuknow website for parents and carers
An excellent source of information on child safety on the internet from the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP),
Useful information on online privacy and protecting your computer.
AVG anti-virus software
Free anti-virus software to download to protect your computer.
Get Safe Online website
Expert advice on a wide range of online issues.
Browsing the websites recommended in Usborne Quicklinks is a useful introduction to the web for young children. However, please be aware that the content of a website can change at any time and Usborne Publishing is not responsible for the content of any website other than its own.
We strongly recommend that children are supervised while using the internet, and that you ensure that they follow our three basic rules for internet safety:
The following websites are designed for children, to educate them about the internet. We suggest you review these sites yourself, and if you feel they are suitable for your children, visit them together and discuss the issues.
This website is produced by CEOP, the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre. It has areas for different age groups and covers all the main internet activities including chatting, emailing, file sharing and cyberbullying.
Another site with lots of information about the different activities children and young teens can do on the internet. There are areas with advice for teachers and parents, too.
Cartoon movies for younger children about keeping personal details safe.
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