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We all know social networking sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, and online games, are incredibly popular with young people.  For young carers, who don't socialise outside of their home as much as their friends, gaming and networking online can be a great interest and support.

 

However, it's really important for you to realise there are potential risks to yourself - including cyberbullying, inappropriate contact by adults and the misuse of personal information.

 

So . . . ALWAYS remember the Childnet SMART Rules opposite when online.

Be SMART - Keep Safe Online

SAFE:  Keep safe by being careful not to give out personal information - such as your full name, email address, phone number, home address or photos or school name - either to people you are chatting with online or by posting it online where other people can see it.

 

MEETING: Meeting someone you have only been in touch with online can be dangerous.  Only do so with your parents' or guardians' permission and even then only when they can be present.

 

ACCEPTING: Accepting emails, IM messages, or opening files, pictures or texts from people you don't know or trust can lead to problems - they may contain viruses or nasty messages!

 

RELIABLE:  Information you find on the internet may not be true, or someone online may be lying about who they are.

 

TELL:  Tell your parent, guardian or a trusted adult if someone or something makes you feel uncomfortable or worried, or if you or someone you know is being bullied online.

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