Using the internet safely

Read and follow this advice to help you stay safe when using the internet.

Talk to your parents

Speak to your parents about what you will be doing on the Internet. Agree some rules between you about what sites you are allowed to use, what times of the day you can log on and for how long you are allowed to be online.

Never give out your password

No matter who asks, whether it is a stranger in an email or your best friend, never ever give out your passwords.

Once people have your password they can log into your accounts and post as if it were you. You have no control over what they might say and you are responsible, even if it wasn't you that said it.

Don't give out your contact details

On this site, we get emails every day from students who want to add their opinion to the current poll or hot topic.

I am amazed at how many students put their email address, facebook page and even phone number in their message saying 'contact me'. Note: we remove any personal details before the post is placed in the poll or hot topic.

You don't know who is reading things that you post on the internet. Don't make it so easy for strangers to find out who you are and get in touch with you.

Don't download any software without permission

Even if that free game is exactly what you have been after for weeks, don't ever download or install software without checking with your parents first.

Most software is fine and won't cause you any problems. But some sites put up games or things that look interesting so that you will download them. Once you install them, they might have a virus or a key logger which can automatically send details of everything you type to somebody.

Respect people's privacy

Just because your camera might be able to take photographs or videos, you don't have the right to post those pictures or videos onto the internet without permission.

Try to imagine how you would feel if you found out that a video showing you doing something very embarrassing was posted onto the internet and you didn't know how many people had watched it. You would feel humiliated and might be scared of facing people afterwards.

This is bullying - don't be the person who humiliates others.

Use a child safe web browser

Many web browsers offer a child friendly version. This means that sites have been checked beforehand to make sure that they are suitable. You would be far less likely to accidentally come across a website with inappropriate content.

Respect copyright

Imagine you have a piece of homework that is due in for tomorrow. You think that there is no need to panic because you know that you can find a website and just copy and paste what they have written.

That is a bad idea. Firstly, your teacher will know, they can tell when something isn't written in your own words. Secondly, you haven't done yourself any favours. Yes, you got your homework in on time, but did you actually learn anything? Thirdly, and more importantly, the work on the internet wasn't yours to copy, it belonged to the person who had written it. So effectively, you have stolen their work.

Don't just copy and paste work from the internet. Research, read, understand and then write in your own words.

Use the internet safely and responsibly

While you are going about your everyday life, you know what is right and wrong, what you should and shouldn't do. Well the same rules apply to the internet.

Don't say mean or untrue things about other people, don't tell lies, don't try to embarrass or trick anyone.






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