Home > Teenage Troubles > Cyber Safety

Cyber Safety

By: Beth Morrisey MLIS - Updated: 28 Aug 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Cyber Safety online Safety internet

It seems like in this day and age we can do anything on the Web. We can shop, we can chat, we can plan our holidays, we can buy music and we can even watch our favourite films. These cyber lives can become intense, and sometimes we feel so safe sitting in our own rooms staring at our screens that we forget we are actually connecting with millions of others throughout the world. Don't let your familiar four walls lull you into a false sense of security, become a cyber safety expert today.

Be Elusive

Keeping your identity a secret is always a good idea when you are communicating with strangers on the Internet. By all means chat and have fun, but don't divulge anything personal to someone you have quite literally never met before. Never:

  • Choose a screen name or handle that gives away your name, age, sex or location.
  • Give out your personal email address, phone number or address.
  • Reveal your age or location, whether explicitly or via clues.
  • Gossip about those you know - you never know who is reading it or where it will be passed.
  • Send pictures of yourself to someone you don't know.
  • Travel alone to meet someone you know only via the Internet.
  • Engage in "cyber sex" with or send intimate pictures to strangers.
  • Set up a webcam to communicate with someone you don't know.
  • Feel pressured by someone you meet online. Just log off instead!

Shop Smart

One of the greatest invasions of privacy that can occur across the Internet is financial fraud and outright theft. Everyday credit card and bank details are electronically tracked and stolen online, draining the accounts of hard working, honest Internet. To protect yourself from such a disaster, remember to:

  • Confirm that the website address from which you are buying items begins with https:// (the "s" is crucial - it stands for "secure").
  • Look for a tiny padlock icon at the bottom of the screen. This reaffirms the security of the site.
  • Always take down the vendor's contact details in case you have a problem with the transaction later.
  • Make a note of the site's exchange and return policies in case of an emergency.
  • Print out a receipt of your purchase for your records.
  • Never send financial account details to emails. If your bank wants to contact you, they will call or send an official letter.
  • Not be fooled by emails saying you have won a lottery or are needed to accept millions of pounds from war torn countries. If it seems too good to be true, it usually is.
Protecting your identity and your finances are the two most worthwhile things you can do when using the Internet. With baddies getting ever more sophisticated in their methods, it's down to you to remain just as vigilant and sophisticated about your safety. The good news is that the Internet is only a means of communicating, and you can drop it at any time. Don't ever feel as though you owe anyone anything on the Web, and don't let anyone else feel that way about you. Good luck!

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • vale
    Re: All about Abortion
    Can a mother tell her 15 year old daughter to terminate her pregnancy under UK law? I see a 15 year old as a minor so surely that should be the…
    11 August 2020
  • Bryan
    Re: Coping With Strict Parents
    My parents are soooo strict. They invade my privacy and it feels like I have no freedom. My mom always goes through my texts and…
    10 August 2020
  • eli
    Re: How to Deal with Pressure From Parents
    right now,i am preparing for jee and i feel so much pressure. i just wanna sleep and never get up.
    8 August 2020
  • Help
    Re: How to Deal with Pressure From Parents
    My parent always pressure me.to be the best. Pressuring me to.be able to make them money.... It make me having…
    5 August 2020
  • Anya
    Re: All about Abortion
    Hi, I’m 15 and I’m possibly pregnant. Would I be able to get an abortion without my parents finding out?
    5 August 2020
  • Marie
    Re: Coping With Strict Parents
    I relate to you guys a lot.Theyve made me so depressed in the past I wanted to end my life.But to me I’m quite religious and I kept…
    2 August 2020
  • Payton
    Re: Warning Signs of Self Harming
    Hey Im in year 6 I’m 11 I cut my self I want to die
    29 July 2020
  • vlectus
    Re: Coping With Strict Parents
    my parents are too strict. they only let me play a game for 1 hour even in the holiday,, i keep telling my parents all of my friends…
    24 July 2020
  • Nessa
    Re: Coping With Strict Parents
    Im 16 and ive never ever have hung out with my friends. thats why i lost so many friendships not being able to hang outside of…
    22 July 2020
  • Ali
    Re: Fostering and Adopting - Teenagers
    I’m 16 years old, I live with my single mum who has pulmonary fibrosis, I am an only child. I have no family in the UK,…
    18 July 2020