Not all e-safety resources are relevant to children of all ages. It's sometimes helpful for you as a parent or guardian to equip yourself with some knowledge of the sites and apps that your children might be using. That's where this page will help. This is the inside track of what apps are being talked about and used by young people and includes areas of concern as highlighted by child welfare organisations.
Childnet have a particularly good reference point in their 'hot topics'; a collection of current e-safety subject areas. Many of these are subjects that adults will be aware of and discuss but a lack of clarity and misinformation will often mean that the implications for a child's safety are sometimes unclear. Topics covered including cyber bullying, sexting, online grooming and parental controls (including advice on in-app purchases).
Childnet also promote the 'smart' approach to staying safe online; it's a good reference point for conversations about e-safety that you can come back to in regular conversation, or encourage your children to refer to independently.
Net Aware from the NSPCC
Net Aware might become your most useful page when it comes to the latest trends among social networks and apps. Provided by the NSPCC, Net Aware provides parents with a catalogue of known popular apps and sites, along with explanations of the key points for you to look out for.
Each app that is covered is categorised, the minimum age limit is clearly shown (this is typically the age at which a user can legally sign up for the service), followed by an explanation of the app's purpose. In addition to this, each page includes children's opinion of the app and qualitative information about the signup process, reporting abuse functions, privacy settings and included safety advice. Finally, a number of community viewpoints are included, with comments and ratings from children and parents.
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