Global Safer Internet Day – 5 top tips to keep in mind today!
February 10th is officially Global Safer Internet Day – as always we want to make the internet as safer place as possible for all of us. The Beat The Cyberbully initiative’s core focus is increasing awareness and education levels around the online space and the fact there is a day like today in the calendar, shows how big a part of our lives this wonderful tool has become.
Today’s message is all about staying safer online and it’s a conscious effort to use the word safer, rather then the word safe. Most of us involved in this digital environment know that you can never be 100% safe online, it’s just not possible. But you can ensure that your surfing experience and that of your children is as safe as possible.
So today, if you do nothing else;
1. Take the time to look at your privacy settings on yours and your children’s social media channels. Is a lot of your information available to any one that happens to pass by your page, or are you limiting who can see what?
Not ensuring your privacy settings are in place is akin to literally opening the front door of your house and leaving it open for anyone and everyone to just pop their head in.
2. Consciously think about what you are posting – One of our favourite sayings is ‘Avoid the temptation to give information’
In this day and age, we have to fill out so many forms to get anything on line that we think nothing of it, but are you perhaps giving more information than you need to? Or more importantly are you putting all the necessary information out there and not protecting it with your privacy settings?
3. We know that we live in a super busy world and our time is the most important resource, in fact it’s the only one we cannot replace, so we have to make the most of every minute right? Well in spite of your super busy lives, and your expectation for everything right NOW! When it comes to online, we highly advocate our next mantra
Just that extra couple of seconds before hitting send/post/tweet/publish could help keep you that little bit safer today. Do you really want that emotional response to a message out there? Do you really want to send that rebuke that actually shows you in the light of a cyber bully? Do you really want to post all that personal information about how you are feeling in a public forum where people pray on the young and the emotionally vulnerable? Stop | Think and if you still think it’s a good idea |Post
4. Talk to your children! We can’t emphasise this enough – they are digital natives growing up in a digital world. A world that didn’t exist when you or I were growing up, but it’s their reality. It’s our job as parents to ensure we provide the best for our children and of course keep them safe. When it comes to online, we can only do our best to keep them safer, and we can do so by increasing our own knowledge and then frequently speaking with our children.
We need to be able to a) understand the problem and b) teach our kids that we are there as a trusted resource to help them when they get into trouble online.
5. Think about the future. Whether you are a youngster growing up in the digital world, a parent, a teacher, a young graduate or a successful CEO, there is no escaping that your online reputation is now key to succeeding – whether you want to go to university, get a job, move jobs or set yourself as the authority in your space. Your online reputation is your reputation.
The saying goes that we only get one chance to make a first impression. That is still true, only now 9 times out of 10, you won’t physically be present to make that first impression and that is regardless of what stage of life you are at. Staying safer online is about empowering each other to take control of what is going on within our own digital worlds. What you do online is what we call your digital tattoo as it goes with you wherever you are. We advocate generating positive content out there in the digital world, so that when people inevitable search you, whether on Google, Facebook, YouTube, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Twitter, Blogger or any of the other hundreds of thousands of channels out there, they get a positive insight into you. By being consciously aware of your actions and the potential ramifications of them further down the line – you take control of your online reputation, you take control of how people will perceive you, and as you increase your levels of understanding and awareness, you can keep yourself and those you love safer online.
Happy Global Safer Internet Day everyone!!!