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Tips for keeping yourself and your family safe online

Safer Internet Day is on February 5 and this year’s theme is ‘Together for a better internet’. Social Media is a great way to keep in touch with friends and family and connect with like-minded people, but make sure you stay safe online.

  • Stay in control – people you only ‘know’ online are still strangers, even if you have been talking to them for a while. Don’t be pressured into doing something you don’t want to do. Tell someone if you see something that makes you uncomfortable. Know how to block those who offend you and how to report issues like bullying or inappropriate comments.
  • Protect your personal information – including email, phone number, bank details and passwords. Be careful about which photos and videos you share online - avoid images of home, work, school or places you're associated with.
  • Not everything online is true; someone might lie about who they are, or tell you things that are untrue. Check information for yourself, or ask a friend, family member or carer for advice. 
  • Check content is appropriate for children and set parental controls. The 4 big internet providers in the UK – BT, Sky, TalkTalk and Virgin Media - provide their customers with free parental controls which can be activated at any time. They have come together to produce these helpful video guides to help you to download and set-up the controls offered by your provider. 
  • Only open emails, messages, images or texts from people you know or trust. If you don't know who they are from they may contain viruses or nasty messages. Use reliable services and know how to legally access the music, film and TV you want.