Parents warned to keep children safe online
PARENTS are being urged to keep their children safe online with police fearing personal information is being disclosed.
Websites such as Chat Roulette and Omegle encourage people to meet anonymous strangers online.
Omegle even has the tagline ‘Talk to Strangers.’
The fear is that young people can be drawn into disclosing intimate personal details online, including questions about their sexual experiences. There are concerns that such sites could be used for grooming or exploitation purposes.
Gloucestershire Safeguarding Children Board has issued a warning about the websites and the risks involved to professionals working with children and young people.
Board member and head of the Public Protection Bureau Detective Superintendent Paul Yeatman said children and parents should be aware of the dangers of the internet.
“Only this week we have seen national reports in the media about ‘sexting’ amongst children and young people sharing inappropriate images or information online or through mobile phones,” he said.
“Talking to strangers online, which sites like Omegle and Chat Roulette encourage, increases the risk of grooming or exploitation.
“It is really important that children and young people are aware of the risks and parents take steps to keep their children protected when they are online.”
The board advises parents to consult the UK Safer Internet Centre for e-safety tips and parental control software or Thinkuknow for up to date information on online risks. The NSPCC also offers advice about how to talk with children about staying safe online.
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