online safety and digital citizenship specialist

Parents/Carers News

05 December 2013

The National Security Agency is gathering nearly 5 billion records a day on the whereabouts of cellphones around the world, according to top-secret documents and interviews with U.S. intelligence officials, enabling the agency to track the movements of individuals — and map their relationships — in ways that would have been previously unimaginable. Read the full Washington Post article here.

04 December 2013

Young people are anonymously bullying and trolling themselves online in what some are calling cyber self-harm. Why?

Internet trolling is on the increase, according to recent reports. When people are bombarded with abuse and threats on social networking sites the common assumption is that a stranger is doing it, but it's not always the case.

Some people do it to themselves.

It's known as self-trolling or self-cyberbullying and some charities and social media experts say it is part of another emerging problem they are calling cyber or digital self-harm. Read the article here.

19 November 2013

'Recently we’ve seen the rise of a new wave of startups that give far more control back to users. They have avoided the public nature of Twitter and the – sometimes toxic – vagueness of Facebook which has happily moved from a private network to one where, frankly, you’re never quite sure what is public or not.'


Read the full article here.

31 October 2013

And so it begins... California-based Glass Explorer Cecilia Adabie is the first person to get a ticket while wearing Google's head-mounted computer. And she won't be the last.

Abadie was driving in San Diego when an officer pulled her over for speeding. The primary infraction was for going 15 mph over the speed limit, but there was a secondary offense scrawled on the ticket: "driving w/ monitor visible to driver (Google Glass)."


Read the full story here.

17 October 2013

'Young people are frequently taking huge risks making and sending sexual images of themselves, also known as 'sexting'.

ChildLine and the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) are joining forces to ensure young people of 17 years and under know where to turn to get sexually explicit images removed from online.

In a ChildLine survey of 13-18 year olds:

60 per cent said they had been asked for a sexual image or video of themselves

40 per cent said they had created an image or video of themselves

25 per cent said they had sent an image or video of themselves to someone else

Sexual images and videos received and sent

by strangers

Over half of the young people surveyed by ChildLine said they had received a sexual photo or video, most received them from a partner but a third received them from a stranger.(1)

Whilst most said the image went to a boyfriend or girlfriend, a third said they sent it to someone they met online but didn't know in real life and 15 per cent said they had sent it to a total stranger.'

Click here for resources and more information.

17 October 2013

Facebook announced today that teenage users can now make their posts public on Facebook. Previously, the social network limited users between the ages of 13 and 17 to distributing posts to their extended network—i.e. friends and friends of friends. Teenage users also now have the option to turn on the "follow" setting for their accounts, letting public updates appear in news feeds.

In an apparent attempt to mitigate the impact, Facebook has set the default sharing setting for new teen accounts at "friends only," compared to the previous default of "friends of friends."


Read more here.