According to Ofcom, 69% of under-18s use a smartphone as their main method of going online. Additionally, 49% of children use them for online gaming – putting smartphones only behind consoles (59%) as the device of choice for playing games on. Most people won’t require such statistical evidence, however, to acknowledge the huge importance of phones to young people.
Given that Santa’s recent visit is likely to have bestowed smartphones on an even greater number of young people, it’s a particularly opportune moment to ensure that children are able to use their handsets responsibly – and, above all, safely. From passcodes to parental controls, and from screen time to scams, our #WakeUpWednesday guide has the essential advice.
At this time of year, it’s highly possible that you have a new phone, games console or other digital device stashed somewhere at home, ready to be unwrapped. Many parents also prefer to place some protective measures on those gifts – to keep their child shielded from potential #OnlineSafety risks – while others would like to, but aren’t sure where to begin.
The guide below shepherds you through the process of establishing parental controls on new internet-enabled devices, from smartphones to laptops to consoles. Simply find the device in question and read on to find out what options you have and how to enable them – letting children enjoy their shiny new gadget, without so much of the worry over where it might lead them.
With Christmas right around the corner, millions of families are excitedly anticipating the chance to spend some quality time with each other over the festive season. When everyone’s engrossed in their phones or glued to their games consoles, however, genuinely meaningful moments with loved ones can often be difficult to orchestrate.
Our Christmas #WakeUpWednesday guide will lend a hand: providing some advice on helping young people to set aside their devices for a while and live in the moment. Even if going full tech cold turkey feels unrealistic, implementing just a few of these tips could still decrease the amount of screen time in your home this festive season – enabling everyone to make the most of it.
Smart TVs have become more affordable in recent years, making them readily available to most consumers. These more advanced systems offer numerous features beyond those of a normal television set – chiefly, the ability to access the internet and interface with popular streaming services without the need for a set-top box or other intermediary device.
This increased functionality, however, also brings additional threats to privacy, security and more – as you’d perhaps expect from any device capable of going online. As TV is such a cornerstone of our home lives, these dangers can be uniquely difficult to manage. Our #WakeUpWednesday guide breaks down the major risks, with tips on helping children to enjoy TV … stress free.
The social media network formerly known as Twitter has undergone numerous alterations since its change of ownership and rebranding as X – and many of these recent developments have proved controversial. With any user now simply able to pay a fee for account verification, for example, the once-reliable ‘blue tick’ system has become largely meaningless.
It’s just one of several changes that have set the social media giant on what many consider a concerning path in online safety terms. This #WakeUpWednesday guide provides a run-down of the most significant tweaks made to X; their potential safeguarding implications; and how to help ensure young people minimise the risks while they continue to use the service.
WhatsApp is the most widely used messaging platform on the planet, with over two billion users (forecast to become three billion by 2025), across more than 180 countries. The majority of those people (70%) open the app at least once a day – but what exactly are they seeing? Contact from strangers, fake news and convincing scams are all among the service’s well-documented hazards.
According to Ofcom, WhatsApp is used by more than half of 3- to 17-year-olds in the UK (including one in three from the 8–11 bracket), despite its 16+ age restriction. If your child hops onto WhatsApp to stay in touch with friends or family, our updated guide to the service contains the key details you’ll need to support them in doing it safely.
Encrypting messages to protect users’ privacy has undeniable merit, but it also poses obvious risks – especially to young people. Updated to reflect the newest version of WhatsApp, this #WakeUpWednesday guide brings trusted adults the latest essential info.
In 2021, the NCA cited that 42% of parents in the UK share pictures of their children online – half of them doing so at least once a month 👶 Why would they not? Parenthood – and the magical memories we create with our children – is something to be celebrated and chronicled: in an ideal world, at least.
In reality, the topic has become increasingly complex – with respect for other people’s children who might also be in the photos and our own child’s future feelings among the considerations. This #WakeUpWednesday guide assesses the potential pitfalls of publicly posting our pics.
Like a lot of digital services, live streaming really found its niche during the pandemic – think of Joe Wicks’ at-home fitness classes, Billie Eilish’s virtual gigs and Miley Cyrus’ chat show, for example. Real-time broadcasting of video content over the internet isn’t solely the province of celebrities, however: anyone with a device and something to say (or show) can take part.
With platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, TikTok and Twitch all offering routes to a vast online audience, young people have enthusiastically taken up the baton – streaming on subjects from gaming to sports to live shopping (yes, really!). Potentially having strangers among one’s viewers, though, is just one of many concerns. Our #WakeUpWednesday guide has the key information.
Read on to access your free guide…National Online Safety
With the school summer holidays only a matter of days away, many parents and carers will already be planning outings and activities to keep their young ones entertained. In between those special summer moments, though, there are also likely to be occasions when children happily invest a whole afternoon in Among Us or spend most of their Monday on Minecraft.
As young people’s screen time almost inevitably increases over the holidays, parents like to feel confident that their child will stay safe while they’re exploring the digital world. So we’ve produced a #WakeUpWednesday poster with some simple solutions to help children avoid frequent online pitfalls and enjoy a more positive experience when they go online this summer.
Read on to access your free guide…National Online Safety