Keeping children safe online

1 in 5 internet users in the UK are children. We won’t stop until every child is safe online.

Together, we can keep every child safe online.

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown how urgent it is for us to come together to stop online abuse. During last year’s lockdowns our helpline saw a 60% increase in contacts from people worried about children experiencing online sexual abuse. That’s why we’re campaigning for laws to protect young people online.

We all have a role to play - use our advice, tools and resources to help keep every child safe online.

Online safety resources

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It may feel daunting to talk about staying safe online – especially when your children are using the internet differently to you. We have advice and support to help:

Free online safety resources
From setting up parental controls to advice on sexting, online games and video apps, we can help you to understand the risks and keep your child safe. Read our guides above.

Start a conversation about online safety
We have advice about how to start talking to your child about online safety and how to make sure they know they can turn to you about anything that worries them.

Book a free online safety webinar
The NSPCC are offering free webinars for groups of parents and carers, making it easy for you to keep your family safe online. Email us to book your place.

Worried or need some advice? 

Whatever your worry, our helpline is here to help. Call us on 0808 800 5000, email help@nspcc.org.uk or fill in our online form to get advice and support from safeguarding experts.

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The internet is an important part of every child’s life. And during the lockdowns last year we were all online more than ever.  

Our Childline website has support and advice about a whole range of topics to do with online and mobile safety, like: 

We also have tools and resources for children and young people: 

  • Report Remove 
    The Report Remove tool helps young people report and remove nude images or content shared online  
  • Coping Kit 
    The Coping Kit has offline activity ideas to help children and young people cope with feeling low or bored 

Get support from Childline

If you’re 19 or younger you can get confidential support from Childline counsellors about anything that worries you. We’re here to help 365 days a year. Call, email or chat with our counsellors online.

Get support from Childline

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If you work with children or in safeguarding – our NSPCC Learning site has tailored resources to help you keep children safe online.  

From keeping children safe online during the coronavirus pandemic to protecting children from online abuse – we have advice, guides, draft policy statements, elearning courses and more to help you manage online risks. 

See our online safety resources

Take our online safety training course

Our highly-rated interactive elearning course on online safety will teach you about how children and young people use existing technology, the risks involved and how to protect them from harmful content online in your context.

Buy now

Worried or need some advice? 

Whatever your worry, our helpline is here to help. Call us on 0808 800 5000, email help@nspcc.org.uk or fill in our online form to get advice and support from safeguarding experts.

We must end online abuse

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1 in 3 young people have seen something worrying or nasty online1

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Just under half of young people have been exposed to online pornography2

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In 2020/21 there were over 2,500 Childline counselling sessions about online bullying3

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In 2020, the Internet Watch Foundation confirmed over 153,000 reports made contained child sexual abuse images4

Help us keep children safe online

The law should protect children online

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We’ve been campaigning for laws to keep children safe online – regulating big tech firms and forcing them to protect their young users. Right now, the government’s Online Safety Bill doesn’t do enough to tackle the ways children are at risk. We won’t stop until every child is safe online.

Take action now


References

  1. In 2020/21 there were a total of 2,508 counselling sessions with young people worried about bullying online.

  2. Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) (2021) The annual report 2020. Cambridge: IWF In 2020, the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) confirmed 153,383 reports as containing child sexual abuse imagery or UK hosted non-photographic child sexual abuse imagery. This was a 16% increase from 2019.

  3. Martellozzo, E., Monaghan, A., Adler, J.R., Davidson, J., Leyva, R. and Horvath, M.A.H. (2016) I wasn’t sure it was normal to watch it. London: NSPCC An online survey with 1,001 girls and boys aged 11-16 across the United Kingdom found that 476 young people (48%) had seen online pornography, whilst 525 (52%) reported not seeing online pornography. Children and young people were most likely to have first been exposed to pornography inadvertently (e.g. via pop-ups or shown by someone else unexpectedly)

  4. Ofcom (2021) Children and parents: media use and attitudes report 2020. London: Ofcom. In 2020, 31% of surveyed 12- to 15-year-olds said they had seen something online that they found worrying or nasty in some way that they didn’t like.