Online safety

Online safety

Protecting your personal information is a very important aspect of staying safe online. So do you know what you need to protect and how?

Some quick steps to take to keep you safe online are:

  1. Keep your profile set to private and check your settings regularly
  2. Don't share personal information, and protect yourself from strangers online
  3. Think about your personal safety before you 'check in' or use location based services
  4. Manage your digital reputation responsibly
  5. Respect others and look after each other online

Think about subscribing to the Australian Government's free Stay Smart Online alert service to keep up-to-date with online threats and scams, security information and tips to protect your online safety and privacy.

Dealing with Bullying   

  1. Block the cyberbully
  2. Take a screenshot as evidence of the cyberbullying
  3. Report offensive material to the website administrator or service provider
  4. Talk to a friend or trusted adult
  5. For more help, call the Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800) or contact the police 1800 333 000 for non-urgent matters or 000 for emergencies)

Tips for parents and carers  

Parental controls are useful when children have access to mobile phones, tablets and computers. They can allow you to restrict what content can be accessed on these devices. Placing parental controls on devices can ensure that your children are only able to access age-appropriate material.

Guides on the parental control options for a number of popular devices are available from the ThinkUKnow website.

Useful websites

1. eSmart website 

An introduction to eSmart with a range of videos, guides, testimonials and case studies.

2. Protecting your computer 

An Australian Government site that looks at hoaxes, hackers, spyware, malware, password protection and prevention.

3. Reporting cyber bullying for under 18s 

The Office of the Children's eSafety Commissioner has wide ranging federal powers to manage serious cases of cyber bullying.

The above link is a website for Under 18's to report illegal or offensive content, or get help using their complaints service.

Housing over 300 short video's and guidance pages on Social Media Centre's, eSafety issues and eSafety partners, learn more information about the process or request a presentation at your organisation.

4. Complaints and reporting for adults 

The Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network is the official government site for adults to report cybercrime incidents which may be in breach of Australian law.

5. Games, Apps and Social Networking 

A snapshot of the leading online games, apps and social networking sites. Click on each of the apps to find out more about their terms and conditions including privacy, age restrictions, reporting, blocking and account guidelines.

6. Teenagers and the internet

A leading site focused on online safety for teenagers. It has two sections — one for parents and one for young people (11-17 yrs) and includes information on issues including sexting, digital reputation and online relationships.

7. eSmart Digital Licence 

Created by cyber safety experts, teachers and psychologists, the eSmart Digital Licence is an engaging way to develop eSmart skills.  Complete the free 10 question trial quiz or upgrade and earn a full digital licence.

8. Scams and the internet 

Up to date information on frauds and scams.  You can use this site to report an internet scam and learn about the types of scams.  Subscribe to their email list and receive up to date information on the types of scams currently circulating.

9. Spam  

Find out information on how to report, block and reduce spam.  Information is provided for both email and SMS spam.

10. Online shopping 

The ACCC website provides advice on how to follow up complaints when online shopping goes wrong.  What are the pitfalls and what recall do customers have?

11. Online Copyright
Head to the above link and click on the A-Z link for wide-ranging information on a variety of online copyright issues. Included are documents written specifically for libraries relating to fair use and library exemptions.

12. iParent
An online resource for ‘parenting in the digital age’ and how to play a role in ensuring a child’s online experience is positive and safe.

13. eSafety Women
The ‘eSafety Women’ resources aim to help women manage technology risks and abuse by giving women the tools they need to be confident when online.

14. Common Sense Media  
Common Sense Media rates apps and websites in the same way as books and movies. Each is given a traditional rating from G to R and a second rating based on educational value.

15. Exposure to online pornography  
A community-based project that supports young people, parents, schools, government and the community sector to understand and address the influence of online pornography.

16. New Internet Users  
A website aimed at first time new internet users. Easy to read and manageable, covering 11 basic topics.

17. Telstra Tech Savvy Seniors  
Developing the digital literacy skills of older Australians. Includes ‘self-teach' videos, face-to-face training locations, and trainer guides. Available in English and eleven other languages.

Merri-bek City Libraries is working towards being an accredited eSmart Library. An eSmart library is a library in which the smart, safe and responsible use of digital technologies is the norm, and all members of the library community are equipped to embrace the best these technologies can offer, while being perceptive and proactive about the pitfalls.