Online Gaming: What is it and how to stay safe online

It’s also important to teach your child about what information can and can’t be shared, and with whom. ‘We often hear kids saying they’ve “been hacked”, for example, when actually they gave their password to a friend, they fell out, and their friend then shared it on,’ Laura explains. Many children are naturally trusting, and while it’s lovely to see their innocence, it can lead them into trouble online. As children get older, peer pressure steps up, and before you know it, your nine-year-old is claiming that ‘everyone else’ is playing the 18+ rated GTA V. As part of our #WakeUpWednesday campaign we add a new platform guide every week for schools to share with parents. New consoles and upgrading computer parts takes care of the hardware, while microtransactions (the art of paying for small, in-game boosts with real money, such as loot boxes) can run up costs rapidly.

  • Some games geared toward older children have stripped-down versions for younger children.
  • Every school has a member of staff responsible for safeguarding, and they can be a great support for both you and your child.
  • It’s best to make sure there are no identifying factors on display in your username and that you don’t share any personal details on gaming forums.
  • You’ve spent weeks on this game and you’re finally at the end.
  • Online gaming is an increasingly popular activity for kids.
  • Focus on positive sentences or phrases that you like to think about and are easy to remember.

Following these simple guidelines can prevent problems later. It’s not only teaching my little one things, it’s showing me how things should’ve been done when I was younger. I do wish you were around then, as your content is fantastic and my little boy looks forward to your daily worksheets. Teach your child that there are strategies that they can take themselves, including muting or blocking the person who is causing offence, or using the Report function in a game. They might encounter interactions that feel uncomfortable, be unkind or offensive themselves, or even find themselves targeted by bullies or predators. Laura recommends creating a culture of openness where your child can talk to you about who they’re gaming with. ‘Children often can’t tell the difference between who’s a good guy and who’s a bad guy, but they need to recognise that stranger danger exists online, and that they are simply not allowed to share personal information,’ Laura says.

Risk: interacting with others

In fact, hackers probably count on you not being able to remember multiple log-ins, giving them the ultimate upper hand. You’ve spent weeks on this game and you’re finally at the end. And then it happens — your screen goes black, you’re locked out of your account, and all of your progress is lost. Now you have to scramble to lock your bank account before your virtual dilemma turns into a real-life debacle. Games like Minecraft have specific servers for younger children – think of it as a supervised “backyard” meant for young children to play the game without fear of being exposed to inappropriate content. Before allowing your child to download, purchase, or play a game, check the age rating. Some games geared toward older children have stripped-down versions for younger children.

What are the positive and negative effects of video games?

Improved graphics allow for a virtual experience, and this more real experience has a powerful influence on the lives of young people. The downside of video games is that the more time children and teens spend playing violent video games the more likely they are to display aggressive behavior.

‘Schools and parents both have a responsibility to upskill children to handle risky situations while gaming. Despite the many potential issues, online gaming is a fun, social, and popular hobby — and even career — that’s not going anywhere. Use strong, unique passwordsOne of the easiest ways to help protect yourself is by making sure your passwords are different across all platforms. If you want to go the extra mile, then you can even update your passwords once every month so that nothing stays stagnant. When creating your password, make sure you use a combination of upper and lowercase letters as well as numbers and symbols to make it as strong as possible.

Checking if the site connection is secure

If your child has stepped out of line – whether by using unacceptable language or being unkind to others – try not to go in with all guns blazing. Kids might know that they shouldn’t share their details with others, but are unsure where to set the boundary.

It’s safe to say that video games are a lot different today than they were even just 10 years ago. A child isn’t simply sitting in the basement and playing a game with a friend from down the street. A child is playing games on their laptop, phone, tablet, and Xbox – and thanks to in-game voice or messaging, they’re possibly gaming and chatting with a 36-year-old adult, 3,000 miles away, pretending to be a teen. Most modern video games are very much focused on connectivity and going online.

Online Workshop — Protecting Children in a Virtual Learning Environment

In addition to adjusting the control settings on your child’s account, consider modifying the settings within their favorite video games as well. Many computer operating systems, including Microsoft, have family safety settings available to help protect kids. These tools help you specify the types of games your kids can play, monitor who children talk to and how, set time limits, and control what your kids see and share while gaming. In-game purchasesPossibly the most common video game threat for children is one that mostly affects their parents’ bank accounts.

Typically, these pros will be quite young and retire early, as they benefit from much higher reaction times and have more time in general for online gaming. Most games sold at stores are rated by the Entertainment Software Rating Board .

Video game security: How to stay safer while gaming

As exhilarating as any rollercoaster and as absorbing as even the most well-crafted novels, there’s a lot to benefit from loading up your favourite titles and spending a few hours gaming online. Strengthening bonds with friends and improving social skills. Stick to well-known games and games from reputable websites to reduce the risk of scammers.

online gaming safety

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