Skip to content
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Safe messaging

Simple safety tips for instant messaging

As a parent, we’re sure you’ve noticed how typing has replaced talking. And if you’ve got teenage kids, selfies and snapchat streaks are now even replacing typing. But exhausting as it can get to keep up with each new app our kids use these days, the safety rules around using them stay pretty much the same.

  • Protect your personal data: Remind your kids that offline rules apply just as much online. They know not to share their name, gender, age, email address or where they live with a stranger on the street. So why risk doing it when they are online?
  • Keep your selfies safe: We should explain to our kids that a photo once taken and shared lives online forever. Which is why they need to be doubly careful about taking pics next to or with anything or anyone unsafe. Also nudity is definitely out of the question!
  • Be careful with downloads: It may seem like a harmless game, or a funny video, but our kids need to be reminded that any content coming from someone they don’t know shouldn’t be downloaded on either their personal device or any device around the home.
  • Choose your friend requests cautiously: Take the time to explain to your kids that in the online world, anyone can create a social media account. Even potential miscreants who stalk and harm kids. Remind them to double check all their friend requests and if they are unsure, to discuss any new requests with you.
  • Be wary of new contacts who want to meet up: This is especially important for younger kids. As parents, we should regularly talk to our kids about never meeting up in-person (even if it’s in a public place) with someone they only know online.

Rules like these are a great place to start, but they also need to be followed up with some basic vigilance around the house from you as their parent. Some simple things you can do are:

  • Keep an eye on all devices: Remember that many messaging apps work on multiple devices, so even if you are taking away their phone at night, be sure to do the same for their tablet and the laptop / computer around the house.
  • Know your kids device passwords: Remind your kids that you’re not here to snoop on them, but in case of an emergency or serious doubt, you need to have access to keep them safe.
  • Encourage them to chat in the living room: Again, you need to remind your kids you’re doing this to keep them safe, and not to snoop on them.
  • Encourage them to add you as a contact: Chatting with your kids on the platforms they find comfortable is a great way to learn the lingo and understand how their conversations work.
main_icn_24_7_support 360-view 4g main_icn_Accessories main_icn_Add_or_Plus main_icn_Apps arrow-left arrow-right market_icn_Battery bill-or-report-mid block blog-hi-dark broadband-device-hi-dark broadband-mid broadband-device business calendar market_icn_Minutes main_icn_Camera main_icn_Chat cherries-points main_icn_Chevron_down main_icn_Chevron_left main_icn_Chevron_right main_icn_Chevron_up clock-hi-dark main_icn_Clock_or_Timed main_icn_Close community-or-foundation-mid main_icn_Community_or_Foundation connectivity converged-proposition customer-care dashboard-hi dashboard-mid main_icn_Dashboard data-mid market_icn_Data_Sharing market_icn_Deals main_icn_Delete delivery main_icn_Dislike document-mid main_icn_Download main_icn_Edit entertainment-hi-dark error-circle error-simple main_icn_Social_Facebook main_icn_Filter main_icn_Filter social-google-plus help-hi_1 help home-02-hi info-circle infographic-hi-dark country-or-international-hi-dark landline-or-call-mid main_icn_Landline_or_Call main_icn_Like market_icn_LinkedIn location-hi main_icn_Location mail-new-hi-dark mail-read-hi-dark mail-new market_icn_Screen_size main_icn_Menu market_icn_SMS mobile-broadband mobile-hi-dark mobile-mid main_icn_Mobile my-vodafone-mid main_icn_My_Vodafone network-signal-hi-dark network-signal-hi network-signal-mid main_icn_Network_signal offer-badge-percent market_icn_Offer_badge main_icn_Pause payg-hi-dark payg-hi payg-mid main_icn_PAYG social-paypal main_icn_Photos pie-chart play-hi-dark main_icn_Play_circle main_icn_Play_arrow main_icn_Add_or_Plus print main_icn_Privacy 0_rating 5_rating main_icn_Ratings record-hi-dark refresh main_icn_Bill_or_Report main_icn_Reports return-product roaming-hi-dark roaming-mid main_icn_Roaming search-hi-dark main_icn_Search security-hi-dark security-hi security-mid main_icn_Security settings-hi-dark settings-hi share shopping-trolley shopping sim-mid main_icn_SIM market_icn_SIM_Swap social-facebook social-google-plus social-linkedin social-twitter social-youtube main_icn_Student tail [Converted] text-mid main_icn_Text thumbs-hi-dark tick main_icn_Tick_simple top-up-hi-dark top-up-hi top-up-mid main_icn_Top_up tv-hi-dark main_icn_TV main_icn_Social_Twitter users main_icn_Viewed market_icn_Vodafone_store voice-of-vodafone-alerts-mid voice-of-vodafone-alerts warning-hi-dark warning-hi-dark warning weight white-paper-mid country-or-international-mid market_icn_Multinational social-youtube VF_Logo
Close dialog