Keeping Safe on the Internet
Being 'online' is like being in any 'offline' world sometimes stuff happens which feels weird or wrong, seems out of control and that you want to share with someone who can help.
Thinkuknow.co.uk is a new website which aims to get young people to share what they do know and find out if there's stuff that they don't.
How to have fun online
Using new technology can be brilliant, take this Highland Youth Voice website for example - there's loads of great links and ways to get involved in having your say about things in Highland.
Elsewhere on the internet there are cool ways to listen to music, find out about almost anything, chat to friends and shop (particularly relevant for some of us that live miles from the city!) Some of us like to use new ways available online to be creative whether it's writing a blog or making a space, there's something for everyone.
Our advice is remember to keep yourself safe, for example, if you share a picture online you can lose control of where that picture goes or what happens to it!
Keeping in control
Just as there are risks in the offline world there is in the online world, really the term 'virtual world' doesn't apply here, it's all REAL! You have the power to keep yourself safe online. To be able to keep in control you really need to know how to protect yourself from some of the risks you might come across. Always remember how to keep your profile private and how to block people on Instant Messenger.
Remember also not give out personal information or share personal pictures. The Thinkuknow site can give you other great advice, its layout has been designed by young people for young people so have a peek. If this is a subject you and your friends want to know more about why not talk about it more in your local youth forums or at school?
How to REPORT if you are worried.
The Thinkuknow website has an area where you can report problems. However, if you are or you know of someone in immediate danger always speak to parents or carers, trusted adults or call 999.
The Thinkuknow site has a 'Report Abuse' button for young people to use. For example, this might be when a conversation with someone online who you may think could be an adult and is treating you in a way which makes you feel uncomfortable, it might be where you feel you are being bullied online or someone has used your identity. Clicking the 'Report Abuse' button will take you to the Child Exploitation and Protection Centre site, a place where trained adults are there to help you.
We really want you to have fun online and enjoy all the great new ways to keep in touch with your friends, we also want you to be safe and secure. If you want to find out more about keeping safe online, look at the website thinkyouknow.co.uk.
Here are some other places useful for tips on how to keep yourself safe.