Week 2 will focus on the following theme:
SECURITY TIPS FOR PARENTS, ADMINISTRATORS AND CHILDREN
Social media is a term for the online platforms that people use to connect with others, share media content, and form social networks. E.g. Facebook, Twitter, What’s App and Instagram. Social media is part of the daily lives of young people as it has many benefits but also some risks. Below are tips to keep in mind when using social media.
• Be careful what you put on social media. Once it is out there you cannot take it back.
• Never accept invites or friend request from people the child doesn’t know.
• Do not clicking on pop-ups. Some pop-ups that seem safe can lead to pornography sites or ask for personal or financial information.
• Report any strange activities noticed online to a trusted Adult.
Cyberbullying is a form of bullying or harassment using electronic means - it is also known as cyber harassment or online bullying.
It has become increasingly common, especially among children and teenagers. Harmful bullying behaviour can include posting rumours, threats, sexual remarks, personal information, or derogatory labels (i.e. hate speech).
There are various forms of cyber bullying:
• Exclusion – is when a child is excluded from online activities.
• Harassment – is when abusive or threatening messages are intentionally sent to a child.
• Outing – is the public embarrassment of a child through online posting of private information without consent.
• Cyberstalking – is when attackers harass victims through online communication mediums such as emails or social media.
• Fraping – is when an individual logs into a child’s social media account and impersonates them by posting inappropriate content.
• Dissing – is sending or posting damaging information about a child online to tarnish their reputation.
• Trickery – is the act of gaining the child’s confidence so they reveal private information online without the child’s consent.
• Trolling – is the deliberate act of provoking a response through the use of insults on social media.
• Catfishing – is stealing a child’s online identity to recreate an online profile for deceptive purposes.
Please monitor your children closely to ensure they are not being bullied.
ADVICE FOR PARENTS
• Secure browsers by adding parental controls – The browsers used by children should have parental control features on or child friendly browsers should be installed.
• Monitor your child’s browsing history - Children should use the computer and especially the Internet only after asking prior permission from an adult. Parents should make it a habit of monitoring their children’s browsing history when the internet is used unsupervised. Parents can keep track of their children’s online activities by doing the following.
i) Become familiar with the sites your child visits.
ii) Keep computer and devices in public areas where the child can be supervised.
iii) Always have a security software installed and up to date.
• Parents should always make it a habit to know their children’s passwords to monitor their online behaviour.
• Always have the privacy setting on the computer set and the parent control features on both the computer and the browsers activated.
• Empower your children to handle issues - Teach children how to handle online issues such as bullying, unwanted contact, or hurtful comments. Work with them on strategies for when problems arise, such as talking to a trusted adult, not retaliating, blocking the person, or filing a complaint.
ADVICE FOR ADMINISTRATORS
• All activities should be supervised - Administrators should always supervise their student’s online activities, this can be done by monitoring the student’s online history and also by keeping up with the online trends amongst young people.
• Raise awareness on internet safety - students are not just accessing the internet from school, they may be accessing it at home or with friends, and may not be supervised. Hence schools should provide internet safety awareness sessions.
• It is your responsibility as an administrator to be a role model to your students online. Always ensure your online presence reflects a positive image - don’t post anything online that you wouldn’t want students or their parents to see.
• Raise awareness on cyberbullying –
i) Ensure every student understands what constitutes as cyber bullying and its different forms.
ii) Set policies to deter them from engaging in the act.
iii) Have an open relationship with the students to encourage them to report cyber bullying.
iv) Address all cyber bullying or internet safety concerns.
• Computer administration (admin) rights should be restricted on school computers to prevent students and teachers from by-passing security programs and safety measures.
• Routinely verify that only authorized personnel have admin rights on school computers to ensure software programs are not installed which could compromise the network security.
• Get parents involved – Schools should get parents to understand the need for Internet safety at home and at school. Schools can do this by providing parents with newsletters, tips, and tools for improving Internet safety at home. Inform parents about the latest application controls and filters, and encourage them to participate in their child's online safety by monitoring activity.