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HP's Internet Safety Guide for Kids
The Internet can be a great place to learn, play, and keep in touch with your friends and family, but it can also be dangerous. Your parents have probably warned you not to talk to strangers, and that should include those on the Internet. Unfortunately, there are bad people in the world, and you should be extra-careful to avoid them just as much on the Internet as you do in real life. Before you do anything on the Internet, make sure your parents have said that it's OK.
One of the most important things to remember when using the Internet is to never give out any of your personal information. This includes things like your name, where you live, your phone number, and even your school. Don't ever let a stranger tell you that you have to tell them anything about yourself.
You should also be careful not to include any personal information when creating a screen name, either. Try to avoid using things like your real name or birthday in your screen name. Also, whenever you create a screen name, you'll most likely have to create a password as well. Your password is very important, should be hard to guess, and should only ever be shared with your parents.
You should also use extra caution when using any social media, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Snapchat. People aren't always who they claim to be, so you need to be very careful about what information they can get, either from your profile or by chatting with you.
Never share photos online without first speaking with your parents. They can help you decide what is and what isn't OK to post. An online friend may not be a friend at all, and you don't want them learning anything important about you that they could use against you. This is also why you should always speak with your parents before meeting any online friends in real life.
Sometimes, online friends may send you mean or rude messages that make you feel uncomfortable. This is cyberbullying, and if it happens to you, you shouldn't respond to it. Instead, be sure to tell a parent or teacher about the message. Be sure that you never send any messages like this to someone else, either.
While you're on the Internet or using social media, you're also likely to come across online ads. You shouldn't click on or buy anything from these ads without first speaking with your parents. Even if someone claims that you've won a contest or they want to give you something for free, you should still make sure to speak with an adult first. You can't believe everything you see online; people may be trying to trick you into giving them your personal information.
You should also never download anything without talking to a parent. You might think it's something fun and harmless, but it could actually be a virus that steals your information or breaks your computer. This also includes any files that you may receive in your email.
General Internet Safety
- Online Safety: KidsHealth offers great tips for protecting your personal information and dealing with cyberbullying.
- Protecting Yourself and Your Family Online: Learn how to keep yourself and your family safe with this article from WiredSafety.
- Protect Your Personal Information and Your Computer: This guide from the Federal Trade Commission is full of great advice on how to stay safe while browsing the Internet.
- Cybersafety Starts at Home: This great infographic walks you through the steps you need to know for staying safe on the Internet.
- Introduction to Internet Safety: This tutorial from GCFGlobal makes for a great checklist of ways to remain safe while being online. Make sure to practice them all when going online!
- Internet Safety: This page contains lots of information on how kids and teens can stay safe from online predators.
- Children and Technology: Is Your Child Safe Online? This article from Vanderbilt University takes a close look at the dangers you can face when going online. You can never be too safe!
- Socializing Safely Online: Learn about how to have fun with friends safely online with these tips and activities.
- Tips and Tricks for a Secure Email and Social Media Experience: The Family Online Safety Institute has put together this great article on how to avoid scams and being taken advantage of while using social media.
- Tip of the Month: Block and Report: It can be tempting to respond to mean messages online, but this page explains why simply blocking the person who sent it is a much better idea.
- Social Media Safety Tips for Children: Youth First has created a great list of tips for how you can stay safe while still having fun with friends on social media.
- Parents' Guide to Teaching Your Teen Online Safety: This guide from MyTutor breaks down the pros and cons of the top social media sites and apps that are being used today. You can use it to decide which one is right for you.
- Ten Safe Social Networking Sites for Kids: This list contains child-friendly alternatives to popular social media sites like Facebook and Twitter.
- Safe Social Media for Kids: This page is full of helpful tips for parents on how to talk to their kids about the dangers of social media.
- Why Social Media Is Not Smart for Middle School Kids: This article explains why it might be best to wait a few years before joining a social media site.
- Who Cyberbullies? Unfortunately, cyberbullying is a very real problem that could happen to you online. This can help you understand who's behind it and why they do it. It's not your fault.
- HelpGuide: Bullying and Cyberbullying: This article from HelpGuide looks at the causes and effects of cyberbullying so you can better understand why it's happening.
- Tween Cyberbullying Statistics: How likely are you to come across cyberbullying? This page from the Cyberbullying Research Center is full of information.
- National Bullying Prevention Center: Cyberbullying: The PACER Center defines what cyberbullying is and what you can do about it.
- 11 Facts About Cyberbullying: This list from DoSomething.org is full of eye-opening statistics about cyberbullying.
- What Is Cyberbullying?: StopBullying.gov explains exactly what cyberbullying is so you can recognize it if it happens to you.
- Take a Stand Against Cyberbullying: It's important to understand how your words can hurt others and how you can keep people from hurting you.
- A Parent's Guide to Cyberbullying: This guide can help you and your parents understand just how harmful cyberbullying can be when you may think it's no big deal.
- Cyberbullying in School: Computer Safety and Support: This page talks about the types of cyberbullying that take place. It's important for you to know all the ways someone can bully you on the Internet.
- NetSmartzKids: Cloud Chaos: Clean up the bad content being spread around Badromeda before it hurts someone!
- Interland: Play this action-adventure game to learn about how to behave and stay safe online.
- Band Runner: Help characters make smart choices while you collect stars and play your guitar.
- Cyber-Five: Learn five easy rules to keep yourself safe online.
- Internet Safety Hangman: Guess the Internet-related terms in this version of the classic game Hangman.