Safe search and good parental controls are some of the best ways to stay safe.
While the Internet is a great tool, it does contain a lot of unsuitable content such as violence or pornography. Depending on your age, your parent or carer may not be comfortable with you accessing content like that before you’re ready.
It also might just be distressing or upsetting for you, particularly if you’re not expecting it!
Parental controls won’t be able to filter out all of this content so your parent or carer might want to have a chat with you about what to do if you come across content that upsets you.
But before that, there are some things you can do to protect yourself while you’re online:
1. Educate yourself
You probably know the websites that contain inappropriate content.
Be honest with your parent or carer if they’re setting up parental controls and make sure those websites are filtered.
2. Avoid pop-ups
Pop-ups can often contain malware or link to inappropriate websites. Avoid clicking on them where you can.
3. Have good anti-virus software
Anti-virus software protects both your device and you from malware and viruses from being downloaded to your device.
It can also warn you about websites that may not be secure or suitable for you to browse on.
4. Use Safe Search
Both Google and YouTube offer safe search modes which will return age-appropriate results when you search for something.
Remember that your parent or carer has your best interests at heart and only want to protect you from things that might upset or distress you.
If you do come across something like that, talk to them about it. An open dialogue is one of the best ways to build trust and show them that you can be trusted to act smartly and safely online!
If you see something violent, graphic or upsetting and don’t know who to turn to, you can always contact Childline for a one-to-one chat. It is confidential, and you can talk about absolutely anything you want. You can get in touch via the LiveChat button here on our website or on the phone (1800 66 66 66), we are here 24/7 every day.