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E-Safety Advice and Information

“We need to listen to, empower and support young people to understand and manage risks and make the digital world safer. However, we must acknowledge that we cannot make the internet completely safe. Because of this, we must also build children’s resilience to the material to which they may be exposed, help build their confidence and skills to manage situations…..and empower them to support each other.” 

Dr Tanya Byron: The Virtual Violence Report for the Beatbullying charity

Children and young people growing up in the digital world use the internet as an everyday social utility, to communicate and to organize their lives.

Technology and the internet also offer enormous opportunities to transform the lives and learning of children and young people for the better; to discover, connect and create.

two young teenage boys sat on curbHowever, while children and young people should be empowered to use the internet responsibly, adults have a responsibility to ensure that children and young people are aware of the risks, and that they are in the best possible position to keep themselves safe online.

It is very important that adults try to keep up with internet-enabled technology and the ways in which children and young people inhabit the online world, even if it is different to the ways in which adults use the same technology.

The best way to protect children online is through education and conversation with them. Knowing that they can come to you or another trusted adult is the best way to keep them safe.

The Child Exploitation and Online Protection command (CEOP)

The Child Exploitation and Online Protection command (CEOP) is part of the national Crime Agency committed to tackling the sexual exploitation and abuse of children both online and offline.

They have used their unique experience and expertise in the online behaviours of children and young people to develop a national education and awareness programme called ThinkUKnow. All information emphasises the positive aspects of the internet whilst highlighting the risks and how to stay in control of them.

For general e-safety information and advice

This guide, produced by MyTutor, shares valuable information such as:

  • A practical guide for parents on how to keep teens safe online, including useful summaries of popular internet apps as well as the types of threats teens could be exposed to online.
  • Safety tips for using apps such as Instagram, TikTok (which has gathered 1 billion users in only two years), YouTube, Snapchat, Twitter and Whatsapp. There is also advice and safety tips for teens playing online multiplayer video games.
  • Other online safety topics and advice such as sharing personal information, socialising online, cyberbullying, harmful content, influencers, body image and mental health for teens online.
  • Links to additional internet safety resources for parents from well-respected sources such as the NSPCC and the UK government’s own guidelines.

You can check out the full guide here

Accepting or sharing files which may contain viruses or spyware – for example, free music file sharing applications


  • Can lead to webcams being hacked and published
  • Can lead to others being able to access personal or sensitive information, both of the child and of other people who may use the computer.

Sources of help

All computers should have anti-virus programs and firewalls set to prevent unauthorised access.

Once content is posted online it becomes part of your digital footprint and can have far reaching effects in the future.

Young people should be encouraged to become good digital citizens.


  • Prejudice driven abuse and malicious communications e.g. homophobia, inciting violent extremism
    Reputational risk: posting inappropriate content online may become public and permanent.
  • Further education institutes, or job providers, are increasingly checking informal information, such as
  • Facebook profiles, when assessing a persons application for work or training

Sources of help

If you think a child is at immediate risk call 999

Intentionally harming others online.

The impact is hurtful and distressing to those targeted and, depending on the severity of the behaviour, could constitute illegal activity.

Impossible to control once it has been posted, the harmful impact on the target is amplified and the perpetrators reputation and unpleasant behaviour may be permanently recorded, like a ‘cyber tattoo’.

Cyberbullying can differ from other forms of bullying as it can be a constant intrusion into young people’s lives


  • Children and young people can also be the perpetrators of cyber-bullying or abusive behaviour online.
  • Research suggests that around 60% of children and young people have experienced cyber-bullying.

Sources of help

Most cyberbullying can be effectively dealt with if abusive messages or content are saved, or printed, as evidence.

Accessing inappropriate material including:

  • Pornography
  • Radicalisation / Terrorist Material
  • Pro-Suicide
  • Pro- Eating Disorders
  • Drugs
  • Self-Harm
  • Violence


  • Sites may contain illegal material
  • May cause distress
  • May promote premature engagement in sexualised behaviour
  • May promote unhealthy or dangerous behaviour

Sources of help

  • Internet Watch Foundation
  • Controls may be provided by the internet provider for filtering, however these are not 100% guaranteed.

The increase of gaming online. Players are able to communicate with one another.

Graphics are now life-like making it hard to differentiate between reality and the game.


  • May have adult or older teen ratings, but they often attract much younger players
  • Contain large communities of young people who can talk to each other, and a user may potentially become vulnerable to direct contact from predators. Typical tactics to establish relationships of trust include admiring other players techniques, offering cheats and tips, and in some cases offering ‘gifts’ in return for playing on the same team, or with each other
  • Other problematic behaviour includes ‘griefing’ – aggressive or abusive behaviour in a game – or cyberbullying, involving the ridicule of other players, often by re-posting game footage onto other applications, such as You Tube
  • Addiction, leading to losing the sense of priorities and an over-dependence on their online persona
  • Change of behaviour, health and welfare
  • Increased risk of gambling and financial loss

Sources of help

  • The PEGI (Pan-European Game Information) age rating system may help adults make informed choices when buying or allowing access to interactive games.
  • The ESRP (Entertainment Software Rating Board) ratings are designed to provide information about the content in computer and video games in two parts: rating symbols that suggest age appropriateness for the game, and content descriptors. Neither standard is helpful in games where players can generate content themselves
  • CEOP
  • Safer Internet

New technology enables devices to be located by GPS. Presenting a risk of users being tracked.


  • Possibility of being found by an unwanted contact. (see grooming)

Sources of help

  • Devices GPS can be disabled via settings.

Sexting is when somebody uses their mobile to send an inappropriate text or image to other people.


  • Legal implications
  • Reputational risk: posting inappropriate content online may become public and permanent
  • Further education institutes, or job providers, are increasingly checking informal information, such as
  • Facebook profiles, when assessing a persons application for work or training

A process by which a person prepares a child, significant others and the environment for the abuse of this child.

Specific goals include gaining access to the child, gaining the child’s compliance and maintaining the child’s secrecy to avoid disclosure.

  • Children talk about more private things online than face to face
  • Risks of disclosing personal information i.e. names, ages, addresses, details of schools attended – including identifiable photos, or personal passwords.


  • Contact from unknown / unwelcome people
  • Accepting ‘friends’ who may not be who they say they are. These may, occasionally, be sexual predators, aiming to groom children, sometimes with the intention of meeting them offline.
  • May also be people using the internet to threaten, intimidate or bully.

Sources of help

If you think a child is at immediate risk call 999