Staying safe on line:

A useful guide to avoiding the pitfalls of Social Networking.
The internet can be both fun and educational, it can make learning and communication easy. Most people use the internet responsibly. However, a handful of people do not. Sometimes Social Networking can be used for negative reasons. Below is a handy guide for parents, outlining what steps can be taken when things go wrong.
Further information and guidance can be found at:




The internet and social media provides many opportunities for those with extreme views to target young or vulnerable individuals.  The Counter Terrorism Internet Referral Unit put considerable effort into removing terrorist and extremist material however communities defeat terrorism, which is why we must maintain the strong relationship between the public and police. Police depend on information from the public in our efforts to keep us all safe and we are asking anyone who has concerns about online content to report it by clicking the STOP Terrorists’ & Extremists’ Online button.

Stop Terrorism


 If don’t like a story that appears in your News Feed, you can hide it. If you want to prevent future stories from a person, Page or group you follow from appearing in your News Feed, you can unfollow them.
 If you’re not happy with a post you’re tagged in, you can remove the tag.
 If you want a post removed from Facebook, you can ask the person who posted it to remove it. They may not know it upsets you. If the post goes against Facebook’s Community Standards (ex: bullying or harassment), Facebook understands that you may not feel comfortable reaching out to the person directly and encourage you to report it to us.
 If someone on Facebook upsets you, unfriend or block the person.
 If the post is abusive, please report it to us.
To report a profile:
1. Go to the profile you want to report
2. In the bottom right of the cover photo, click and select REPORT
3. Follow the on-screen instructions
To report something on your timeline:
1. In the top right of the post click:
3. Select ‘I THINK IT SHOULD’T BE ON FACEBOOK and follow the on screen instructions


How do I stop bullying on Twitter? If you are being bullied by someone you follow, the first step is to unfollow them. Go to their profile page and click on the ‘following’ button.
Sometimes if someone involved in bullying is blocked, they might create a new account to bully someone with. This can be really frustrating, but if you report it to Twitter they can help block all the abusive accounts.
People can send you direct messages on Twitter, even if you are not following each other. If this is happening, you can make it stop by: – going to ‘settings’ – going to ‘privacy’ – making sure ‘receive direct messages from anyone’ is NOT ticked.
If you do get sent a nasty direct message, remember to take a screenshot so you can report it.
Twitter has a set of rules and you can report anyone breaking these rules. To report a tweet you’ll need to know the URL (web address) of that specific tweet. The URL of a Tweet isn’t always obvious, so Twitter have a helpful guide on how to get the address of a Tweet. Once you’re ready you can use Twitter’s reporting tool.


How do I stop bullying on YouTube? YouTube has a very strict policy on what’s allowed in videos, comments and general behaviour. If the bullying is in a video you can report it by clicking the ‘flag’ button underneath the video. If you want to report cyber bullying or abuse through comments or private messages then you can use YouTube’s reporting tool.


How do I stop bullying on Ask.fm? If you get an abusive message or question on Ask.fm, do not reply. If you reply, the question and your answer will show up on your profile page. If you‘ve connected your Facebook account, the question and your answer can be seen on your Facebook profile too. Switching off anonymous questions and comments on sites like Ask.fm can really help stop bullying.
On every Ask.fm profile, there is a ‘report’ and ‘block’ button at the bottom of the page. You can also block and report any question and answer. Blocking means you can stop someone from asking you nasty questions.


How do I stop bullying on instant messaging? The best way to stop bullying on IM is to block the person and report them on the IM service you’re using. If you know who the person doing the bullying is, it’s also a good idea to report them to an adult you can trust. Blocking someone on IM means they won’t be able to send you nasty messages.
Usually the other person won’t know that you’ve blocked them. You will just appear offline when they look at their contacts. If you are experiencing bullying on IM, saving the conversations will be really helpful when you report the bullying.


How do I stop bullying on Instagram? Instagram is automatically set to public so that anyone can see your images – even if you don’t know them. It’s much easier to stop bullying if your profile is private. When your
profile is private, anyone who wants to follow you and see your photos has to send you a request – which you can ‘approve’ or ‘deny’. This way you can control who sees your photos and can make sure only your friends can talk to you on Instagram.
If someone is sending you messages or comments that make you feel uncomfortable, angry or upset, a really good first step is blocking the user. The other person won’t know that you’ve blocked them – but they won’t be able to view your photos, send you comments or find you in search results. You should also report anyone who is being abusive to you.
It’s worth knowing that if you block someone, they can still mention your username by using the ‘@’ sign. If you are still getting abusive messages, you can block the person sending the messages and change your username – this will mean they can’t mention your username.


How do I stop bullying on Snapchat? You can’t save images you get through Snapchat, but if you get an abusive message you can take a screenshot. This way you will have something to report.
If you take a screenshot, Snapchat will try to send a notification to the person who sent you the original message. So it’s important to think about how the other person might react if they know you have taken a screenshot of their message.
If someone is bullying you on Snapchat, blocking them will stop them from sending abusive messages. You can also report bullying to Snapchat – they may be able to help stop it.
Sometimes you might be added by a username that you don’t recognise. This can make it hard to tell whether you know the person or not and it may lead to bullying. It can be upsetting if you’re not sure who the person is. A good idea might be to set up Snapchat so that you only receive messages from people on your friends list. You can do this by going to your settings then going to ‘Who can send me snaps’. From here, change to ‘my friends’ instead of ‘everyone’.


How do I stop bullying on Tumblr? If someone sends you an abusive question or comment on Tumblr, you can block the user on the Tumblr ‘ignore’ page.
If you answer an anonymous question, your answer will always be published so that everyone can see it on your blog. It’s always better to delete anonymous questions, especially if they are abusive.
When you create a Tumblr account, anonymous messages should be automatically turned off. But if you are receiving anonymous messages, you can stop this from happening by following these steps:
– Click on ‘settings’ (the gear icon) at the top of your Dashboard – Select your blog on the left side of the page – Scroll down to the ‘Ask’ section – Under the ‘Let people ask questions’ option, un-tick ‘Allow anonymous questions’
Turning off anonymous messages is a really good way to stop bullying, because it means you will always know the Tumblr name of anyone asking you a question.
You can block anyone sending abusive messages by pasting their username into the Tumblr ‘ignore’ page. You can stop anonymous messages by clicking the ‘ignore’ button (the ‘x’ icon). This will block their account and stop their computer or device from sending messages to your account.

Useful Links

Growing up online: https://www.thinkuknow.co.uk/parents/Secondary/

Childnet Hot topics: http://www.childnet.com/parents-and-carers/hot-topics

Parents’ guide to technology: http://www.saferinternet.org.uk/advice-and-resources/parents-and-carers/parents-guide-to-technology

Get safe online: https://www.getsafeonline.org/safeguarding-children/#.UmZgjPmkqzk

NSPCC Online Safety Advice: https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/keeping-children-safe/online-safety/

Advice on specific sites

Ask.fm – http://www.saferinternet.org.uk/ufiles/ASK-FM-Online-Safety-Guidance-(Updated-Oct-2013).pdf

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/safety/

Facebook guidance – http://www.saferinternet.org.uk/ufiles/Facebook-checklist-Aug2013.pdf

Playstation network – http://uk.playstation.com/psn/support/

Skype – https://support.skype.com/en/category/PRIVACY__SECURITY/

Tumblr – http://www.childnet.com/resources/how-to-make-a-report/tumblr

Twitter – https://support.twitter.com/forms/abusiveuser

X-box Live – http://support.xbox.com/en-GB/xbox-live/online-privacy-and-safety/online-safety

You Tube – https://support.google.com/youtube/topic/2803138?hl=en-GB&rd=1

Reporting concerns

Exploitation/grooming –  http://www.ceop.police.uk/

Criminal content – https://www.iwf.org.uk/report

Hate crimes – http://www.report-it.org.uk/home

Inappropriate media – http://www.parentport.org.uk/

Scams and frauds – http://www.actionfraud.police.uk/

Sexting – http://www.securus-software.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/A-Parents-Guide-07OCT13.pdf?dm_i=ELS,1YEMV,8SP58O,712GH,1

Cyberbullying – http://www.beatbullying.org/parents-and-carers/

Reviews of apps/games/sites


Want to set up parental controls?

Internet service provider advice – http://www.saferinternet.org.uk/advice-and-resources/parents-and-carers/parental-controls

Windows safety controls – http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/windows-vista/protecting-your-kids-with-family-safety