There are steps that children and parents can take, now, which will significantly reduce a child’s data footprint – some of which are very simple. We have brought the key steps together below.
- Stop and think when you’re about to share some personal information. Ask yourself, “Do I need to share this”? If you can’t do what you want (eg play a game) without giving away this information, ask yourself, “Is it worth it?” – sometimes it is, but lots of times it isn’t.
- Read our Digital 5 A Day guide if you spend lots of time online and on social media, to help you think about other ways you can spend your time: connect, be active, get creative, give to others and be mindful.
- Look through terms and conditions to understand what data is collected when you use social media, websites and gadgets. Read our simplifed T&Cs.
- Mute smart speakers when you don’t want them to listen to you.
- Talk to an adult you trust if you are worried about someone else knowing something about you, or if you want to learn more about your data rights.
- Don’t post photos and videos which reveal personal information about your children online. Sometimes it isn’t obvious – for example, tagging a child at home on their birthday gives away their date of birth and home address.
- Change the default passwords on all the gadgets your children use – whether it’s a smart speaker, internet-connected toy or location-tracking watch. Don’t forget the router!
- Make sure the gadgets you buy your children are genuine. Counterfeit versions can be less secure than the originals.
- Watch out for security updates and install them as soon as you are prompted.
- Talk to organisations that hold information about your child about what information they collect and why, including schools, online services and retail loyalty schemes. Raise any concerns you have