Parents not giving children the right advice to stay online, charity warns

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PARENTS may not be giving their children the advice they need to stay safe online, the NSPCC has warned.

 

The charity asked more than 600 primary school children what information they needed to stay safe online.

 

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More than 80% said online privacy settings on mobile apps and games was a topic they thought their parents should discuss with them.

 

And just over half (54%) opted for location settings, which can prevent sex offenders tracking children.

 

Poll

However, although eight out of ten parents told the NSPCC in a YouGov poll that they knew what to say to their child to keep them safe online, only 28% had actually mentioned privacy settings to them and just 20% discussed location settings.

 

The charity is now urging parents to make sure their online knowledge is up to date by checking out its updated Net Awareguide, published this week.

 

Guide

The guide now covers a total of sixty social networking sites, apps and games popular with children and is free to access at www.net-aware.org.uk

 

Claire Lilley, NSPCC head of child safety online, said: “If parents aren’t talking to children about things like privacy settings it can leave them at risk of online grooming.

 

“We’ve seen horrendous cases where offenders take a scattergun approach, targeting hundreds of children at a time online, often posing as another young person.

 

“It’s important parents have the knowledge to talk in detail with children about safety settings. ”

 

Apps

Apps such as Tinder, Facebook Messenger, Yik Yak and Snapchat were all rated as risky by children, with the main worry being talking to strangers.

 

However, the majority of parents did not realise these sites could enable strangers to contact their children.

 

The NSPCC is calling for all social networking sites, apps and games used by children to provide easy ways to report abuse, attempts at grooming or concerns about content.

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