You are in control of who you chat to and what you view on-line but it's best to be cautious. To make sure you are web-wise, remember:
- Websites aren't always what they seem - be careful what you click on.
- Remember to keep your personal information private and learn how to block people you don't know from chatting and instant messaging you.
- Check your privacy settings on your social media account and make sure only the people you want to see your profile, images and post can do so.
- Be careful what you say or post on-line; test yourself by asking 'would I want my mum/teacher/stranger on the bus to see this?' If the answer's no, don't post it.
- Anything you post on the internet becomes public information and could remain that way forever. A laugh and a joke now could cost you in the future.
- People on-line are not always what they seem - you're safer if you only chat to people you know in the real world.
- Don't open emails or attachments from people you don't know - they could contain viruses or unpleasant messages.
- Webcams can be really handy and a lot of fun but they can also be used in the wrong way. Using them just to talk to friends and family is the safest option.
- If you feel someone is bullying you on-line, or behaving strangely on a website, contact the site administrator.
- If someone you have only had contact with on-line wants to meet in person, tell an adult that you trust.
The terms and conditions of most social media sites require you to be aged 13 or over so be responsible and 'nail those privacy settings'!
Sexting – what is it?
Sexting is when someone takes an indecent image of themselves, and sends it to their friends or boy/girlfriend via a mobile phone or some other form of technology.
Sexting – why can't I send a picture?
The picture once it leaves your mobile phone could end up anywhere. The bus driver, the shop keeper or even your mother could see the image. Once it leaves your phone you have no control over where it goes or who sees it.
Sexting – the law
Did you know, by sending indecent pictures of a person under 18 on to someone else you could be breaking the law?
If you have an indecent image of another young person on your phone, you are committing an offence.
Sexting – for more information
CEOP, the internet Safety agency have produced a video about the risks of sexting. It tells you how much trouble can be caused by sending an explicit image of yourself by mobile.
Too late already done it
Done something and need to talk to someone about it?
Talk to Childline 0800 1111 (for young people not just children) or the Samaritans 08457 90 90 90.