This week marks the last of our Staying Safe Online articles. I hope you and your family have benefiting from these weekly articles.

A quick recap of the topics covered this term.

1. Cyberbullying – supporting your child online

2. Supporting your child’s safe online social networking

3. Protecting your child’s digital reputation

4. Advice to help manage children’s time online

5. Supporting your child’s safe mobile phone use

6. Managing unwanted online contact

7. Supporting your child’s safe use of online games and in-app purchases

8. Managing sexting

9. Being a helpful bystander against cyberbullying

10. Protecting your child against online identity theft

11. Trolling online – what it is and how to support your child

12. Avoiding online spam, scams and phishing

13. Safe use of location-based services

If you missed any of these articles please go back over previous issues of the Calling. The eSafety Commissioner is a great source of information and I encourage all our families to access any material from this organisation. Once again please be mindful that these articles often use hyperlinks to allow parents to access support material. This week we look at ways to help protect your child against online spam and scams and safe use of local-based services.

12. Avoiding online spam, scams and phishing

If it seems too good to be true, it probably is!

The online world provides you and your child with incredible access to communications and information. However, there are also a number of things that you must be aware of to avoid being taken advantage of.

  • Scamsare ways of obtaining information or money through false means.
  • Spam is an unsolicited commercial electronic message.
  • Phishing is the use of email or SMS to encourage individuals to reveal financial details like credit card numbers, account names and passwords or other personal information. Phishing messages can look like genuine messages from a real bank, telecommunications provider, online retailer or credit card company.

Discuss these actions with your child to avoid this illegal activity.

  • Avoid giving out personal information like your email address or mobile phone number publicly. Check the terms and conditions of anything you sign up for. You may be consenting to receive commercial messages.
  • Do not accept friend requests or respond to text messages from people you don’t know.
  • Remember that banking institutions will never contact customers by email seeking specific account details. Call your bank
  • Ensure that you only disclose financial information on websites that you trust and that have secure payment facilities. Look for a URL that begins with ‘https’ and padlock symbols once you get to the payment page to check it is likely to be secure.

If your child has been affected by spam, scams or phishing, they can report scams here, as well as visiting the esafety website.

13. Safe use of location-based services

Portable communication and entertainment technology has evolved with many devices now connected to the internet and using new features to deliver customised content and functionality.

Some smartphones, cameras, tablets and other small devices have a built-in feature called a geolocator that can pinpoint your exact location. This data is often published online through social networking sites, or used by location-based services such

as maps, public transport apps, retail services and so on. It can also be embedded in images you take with your smartphone camera.

You can support your child’s safe use of location-based services by:

  • Making sure that their location is only visible to friends they know in the real world. Check that the social networking site doesn’t also show their details to those nearby who they might not know.
  • Checking their privacy settings so that if they do share location information, it’s only going to the people they want to see it. If they are in doubt, they shouldn’t check in.
  • Customising their location-based services so that only particular applications can access location information.
  • Switching offlocation-based services and GPS when they are not using them. Most devices and applications allow you to switch location information on and off as needed.
  • Encouraging them to contact the police if they feel like they are in physical danger or are unsafe.

If you, your child or someone you know wants to know more about location-based services, visit

Safer Internet Day 2017 Infographic Diy E Safety Checklist

Mr Darren Kearney - Dean of Students