Online safety is where people are keeping themselves and others from being harmed online. This includes making sure that personal information doesn’t jeopardise people’s future, lead to unsafe communities or even going as far as protecting your mental health and wellbeing.  

There are many dangers that come with being online. Being online isn’t just social media. It can be surfing the web, emails and even facetime and so on. Some dangers of being online are below. However, there are many other dangers that I haven’t mentioned. 

Malware (Malicious software) – These are softwares that are set up on your computer without your knowledge or consent. These can be loaded from email attachments or websites that are not properly protected. Malware softwares takes personal data and financial data etc. 

Phishing – This includes getting emails, text messages and DMs etc from someone acting like someone you know. These people try to get you to tell them personal information such as your home address etc.

Cyberbullying – This is a type of bullying that is done online and for many, using online sources to bully can make it harder for people to find out who they are. This is because you can’t always be sure who has sent an email, or who has commented on social media etc.

Keeping yourself safe online is something that I bet many of you have heard about. It’s something that is important to allow you to be online without getting yourself in danger. Here are some tips and tricks to online safety!

  • Think before you post – Make sure that what you are sharing isn’t something that you will regret in the future. If you wouldn’t want your friends, family, future employees etc to see what you are posting, then is it appropriate to post. Is what you are posting respectful? For example, could what you post cause offence or cause harm. 
  • Don’t share personal details – Things such as your address, phone number, school, date of birth etc should be kept private. Go onto your privacy settings and set your settings that suits you the best. Things such as school logos within photos can also help people find out more about you even if you don’t want that.     
  • Think about who you are talking to – There are many people who want to scam you, phish you (this is where people will try and trick you into giving them information), or try and groom you to find out information about you. They may come across as nice people, but in reality you don’t know anything about them. 
  • Don’t use the same passwords for each account – Using different passwords for each account you have will allow you to have more protection on each account. This is because, if one of your accounts gets hacked, then at least the hacker won’t know the password to your other accounts.
  • Be careful who you follow – Some accounts are made to cause harm to others and sometimes these accounts may look harmless when in fact they are. They can post challenges that seem to be ‘cool’ as everyone seems to be joining in but could potentially cause harm to you. As well as this, some accounts may affect your mental health and wellbeing. My advice would be that once a month, go through who you follow, and unfollow the accounts that you affect you.  

Overall, online safety is something that sometimes can be overlooked. As well as not believing in something that could get you into some trouble. For example, a scam that is disguised as something believable. If you ever need advice or help on something, ask someone that you trust.