NSPCC Share Aware Campaign
Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens and Police have pledged their support for a new online safety campaign from children's charity NSPCC.
The Share Aware campaign is aimed at parents and carers of children aged 8-12 and encourages parents to make sure they are well-informed about online safety and to have conversations with their children about keeping safe. By talking to children from a young age, this can help develop good habits and awareness around online safety as they grow older.
Launched today, Friday January 9, the campaign focuses on the information and images that children may share online. Last year, a survey carried out by Avon and Somerset Police asked 14-17 year olds about their experiences online. 60% of young people who responded to the survey said they had been asked to send a naked image of themselves online.
Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner, Sue Mountstevens, said: "The internet is a remarkable resource. However, it can be quite a daunting place, especially if our children are using it and we feel, as parents, we know little about how they are using it.
"We all have a responsibility for safeguarding young people whether physically or online. That is why it is important to not only raise awareness of online safety but to support parents by providing the tools and materials to enable these conversations.
"I hope the Share Aware campaign will encourage discussion between children and their parents and give parents the confidence to help their children explore all the potential the internet has to offer, safely."
Detective Superintendent Rachel Williams said: "We have pledged our support for the NSPCC Share Aware campaign as part of our commitment to protecting children and young people, a responsability we all share. The survey results last year showed that many teenagers faced situations online which highlight the importance of being aware of online safety.
"Online sites, apps and games form a part of daily life for children and young people. Being connected offers many benefits but it is vital we all promote the safe, responsible and positive use of digital technology, to empower children and young people with the knowledge to use the internet safely.
" Police are playing a part, with eSafety trained officers and PCSOs regularly visiting schools and youth clubs across the force to talk to children and young people about online safety and we have launched our own microsite to give young people advice and information on a range of issues - burnttoast.org.uk
"The Constabulary also supports a number of eSafety initiatives including Internet Safety Day, held each year in February. we encourage people to get involved, build their knowledge, have those online safety conversations and help work together to keep children and young people safe."
Parents can access a range of new resources including Net aware, a simple NSPCC guide to the social networks, sites and apps children use - as rated by parents and young people themselves.
There is also a downloadable guide and a hard copy booklet for parents, containing top tips for keeping your children safe online, as well as conversation starters to help parents have conversations with their children. Visit www.nspcc.org.uk/shareaware for full details.
For additional information about online safety, visit the Avon and Somerset Police website www.avonandsomerset.police.uk or visit www.CEOP.police.uk
Full information about the NSPCC campaign, please visit www.nspcc.org.uk
Posted on Friday 9th January 2015