New research, from the Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner, reveals children as young as eight are sharing their surnames, school details and uniforms, phone numbers, and street addresses on their social media accounts.
“This Safer Internet Day, we are raising awareness of the risks involved with revealing too much personal information online,” says Children’s eSafety Commissioner, Julie Inman Grant.
“We need to be having regular conversations with young people about what is and is not OK to share online, and make sure we are modelling the same behaviours in our own social media use.”
Despite the personal information shared, 61 per cent of young Australians surveyed revealed they had their main social media account set to private.
“The good news is that most young people are using privacy settings, however, education is essential to reinforcing the importance of keeping sensitive information private,” says Inman Grant.
This week, thousands of students across Australia are expected to participate in Safer Internet Day presentations through the Office’s Virtual Classrooms—helping students to positively manage their digital reputation and understand the importance of both privacy and safety online.
The Office is also training librarians across Tasmania through its eSafe Spaces initiative, boosting their skills and confidence to help young people deal with cyberbullying.
“Our resources help young people, parents, and the wider community develop the skills they need to navigate online safely and respectfully, not just on Safer Internet Day, but every day, as a matter of good cyber practice” says Inman Grant.
Safer Internet Day is an international initiative celebrated in more than 90 countries. To get involved or find out more information, visit esafety.gov.au/SID2017.
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