Plea to make online safety a top priority

Parents in the Black Country and Staffordshire are being urged to make online safety a priority for their children if they have received smartphones, tablets or games consoles for Christmas.

Parents should advise their children on online safety, say the NSPCC
Parents should advise their children on online safety, say the NSPCC

The advice comes after the NSPCC and O2 found that thousands of parents who took part in a safety quiz were getting questions about parental controls wrong.

It comes after thousands of parents played the O2 NSPCC Parents vs Kids online safety quiz.

Out of 6,512 parents, 52 per cent didn’t know that games consoles aren’t covered by a parental filter on the home broadband.

And out of 9,796 parents, 47 per cent didn’t realise that if they child accessed the internet while at home through 3G, 4G or 5G then they aren’t subject to the Wi-Fi parental controls.

Without parental controls children are at risk of seeing upsetting or inappropriate content, and can also download or buy apps and games which could be unsuitable.

The NSPCC and O2 joined forces in 2015 with the aim of giving parents the knowledge, skills and confidence to keep their children safe online.

The partnership offers free online resources, including advice for parents on Net Aware – a guide to the social networks, apps and games children use – which features tips on setting up new devices this Christmas.

It also gives personalised advice through the O2 NSPCC advice line, which is open five days a week.

Ally Sultana, NSPCC Midlands campaigns manager, said: “The online world can be full of excitement and entertainment for children and no doubt tablets, smartphones and games consoles will have featured on many Christmas lists this year.

"But the internet is not without its risks, with some children still stumbling across inappropriate content or even becoming victims of abuse.”

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