Cybersafety in Queensland state schools
Cybersafety refers to online behaviour that is safe, appropriate and responsible.
To help prevent cybersafety incidents, students are taught how to:
- use technology appropriately and responsibly
- behave in ways to enhance their own safety.
The Cybersafety and Reputation Management team plays a key role in maintaining the integrity of the department's reputation with regards to cybersafety and reputation management issues. The team have developed programs to help primary and secondary students understand and remember what they should and shouldn't do online:
- Primary school students—learn about how to protect your digital footprint with the Cyber Heroes
- Secondary school students—enhancing your digital identity
Information for students
Everything that you share, like, comment and post online contributes to your digital identity. Your audience can be bigger than you realise.
When you are online never give away your home address, phone number, email address and passwords or any other personal information.
If you don’t know and trust someone in the real world, delete or block them online. Don’t be fooled by fake profiles or mutual friend suggestions.
Make positive choices. Stay in control of your online world. If you make poor choices while on social media or online games there may be social or legal consequences.
When you are online never give away your home address, phone number, email address and passwords. You should treat strangers the same way online as you would in the real world.
For more tips, advice and useful resources:
- Protecting yourself online
- eSafety issues
- Games, apps and social networking
- Classroom resources
- Legal Aid Cyberbullying Sexting and Facebook Guide
Information for parents
To help keep your child safe when they are online, you can:
- put computers in open spaces within your home
- remind your child that content can be posted instantaneously, the downfall is that they can potentially post something without thinking about the ramifications.
- educate your child about appropriate online behaviour and the need for respectful communication with other internet users
- keep an eye on what your child is doing online (both in the home and on any mobile devices they may have access to e.g. phones, music devices and tablets)
- set clear rules about what sites and activities they are allowed to access
- install software to limit their use and monitor/restrict the sites they visit
- discuss a plan with your child about how to address any cybersafety issues that may arise (make sure they know you will be supportive if they mention anything and that they will not get in trouble)
- encourage them to find someone they feel safe talking to, such as yourself, a relative, a teacher or a trusted adult.
Access Online awareness: Information for parents and caregivers (PDF, 4.5MB) which provides important information for parents about cybersafety and cyberbullying. It suggests what parents and caregivers could do if their child is the target of, or is responsible for, inappropriate online behaviour.
The Office of the eSafety Commissioner also provide a suite of resources, helping Australians to have safer, more positive experiences online. In particular, there is a parent page which provides advice for parents and carers, along with a blogposts page which currently contains information about staying safe online during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Social media tips
Social media applications (such as Facebook) are extremely popular with young people and the usage of these sites is only likely to increase.
Some tips to help your child stay safe while using social media include:
- make sure they never reveal their home address, phone number, email address and passwords
- review the age suitability for any sites and apps your child joins or installs
- look at who their contacts and followers are—this will help reduce the risk of them encountering inappropriate people and content
- educate yourself on the issues that children face
- establish an open relationship with your child so they trust you to view their profiles
- reinforce the need for them to keep passwords private and to update them regularly
- ensure your child understands the implications of posting images and content on the internet.
Consider creating an account on the social media application your child uses and request to become friends or follow their account. Your child may resist this but it may still be a good idea to open an account to increase your understanding of the site or app they are using.
Reporting inappropriate content
Social media providers may remove content that breaches their terms of service or acceptable use policies. Most websites and apps have a 'report/block this person' or 'report/flag content' function.
If you don't know who the person responsible is or if they refuse to delete it, you can report the content to the social media administrators for review and possible removal.
Common links for reporting inappropriate social media content:
- eSafety’s Parents page—learn about what children do online and how you can encourage them to be positive digital citizens at different ages.
- Stay Smart Online—read about how to protect personal and financial information.
- ThinkUKnow Parents Portal—contains information about technologies that are popular with kids and advice about app safety.
- Computers and your child—learn how you can help your children to stay safe online, and set boundaries for how to use technology.
- Who's chatting to your kids?—provides tips to help you keep your children safe from online predators.
- Bullying. No way!—information about bullying, harassment, discrimination and violence in schools.
- Social media and the school community (PDF, 1.5MB)—a guide offering information to parents and caregivers about how to use social media in relation to comments or posts about their school community.