Microsoft takes the safety of children online seriously. Through our partnership with the AFP & Datacom on the ThinkUKnow program in Australia, we aim to educate parents on how they can keep their children safe online every day of the year. 

Microsoft partners with the Australian Government to support the Stay Smart Online initiative. Stay Smart Online Week will be held 2 to 6 June 2014. This year’s theme – ‘On The Go’ - reflects the importance of staying safe and secure online while using mobile devices, such as smart phones and tablets, which are used to stay connected for social networking, banking, shopping, and navigating the internet.

Abul Rizvi, Deputy Secretary of the Australian Government’s Department of Communications, shares tips about online safety for children.

Keeping children safe is no longer confined to the ‘real world’; it is a task which has extended beyond the schoolyard into the online world.

The benefits of the internet often appear endless – but with smart phones and tablets becoming part our daily routine, it’s becoming more important to understand how children interact online.

For example, more children are now using online devices outside of the home for activities such as social networking and gaming. Some websites enable children to share personal information with the click of a button and once posted, their details may be accessible by strangers and online bullies.

As a parent or carer, you can play an important role in helping children have safe and positive experiences on the internet. Here are some tips.

• Talk with your child about staying safe online and the importance of good behaviour online
• Talk with your child about protecting their reputation online
• Teach your child to report or talk to you if they feel uncomfortable or threatened online
• Encourage your child to use strong passwords and a different password for their social networking sites
• Remind your child not to share their passwords with anyone
• Sit with your child when they are online and monitor online activities
• Turn off the location services on your child’s phone

There are a number of Stay Smart Online activities and teaching resources with helpful information and advice on online safety for both parents and children.

1. The Stay Smart Online website is an Australian Government initiative, which provides Australian internet users simple steps they can take to protect their personal and financial information online.

2. The Cybersafety Help Button is an online resource which provides easy online access to online safety information and assistance. The application offers counselling, reporting and educational resources associated with online risks.

3. The Easy Guide to Socialising Online provides tips for how parents and children can protect themselves when using social networking sites, online games and search engines.

4. Budd:e is a fun and engaging education package with interactive learning activities for both primary and secondary students. Children can play games for points and build their very own personalised robot or cyborg, while learning important online safety and security behaviours.

 

For further resources, hints and tips to protect your family, visit the Stay Smart Online website or ‘like’ Stay Smart Online on Facebook. You can also subscribe to the free Stay Smart Online Alert Service to receive regular information about current online threats and scams, and solutions to help manage risks.