It’s never a good idea to share personal information such as their name, address, email address, passwords, telephone numbers or the name of their school with people they don’t know and trust in the real world. Talk to your child about how people can sometimes lie online or pretend to be someone else.
Encourage your child to keep gaming friends ‘in the game’ and not to invite them to be friends on their social networks.
Some online games are virtual worlds which never end, where missions can take hours to complete. It’s important to set limits on the amount of time your child spends playing online. Be aware of how long they spend gaming and set rules, as you would for TV. Also, ensure that they take regular screen breaks – at least five minutes every 45- 60 minutes.
Know what to do if something goes wrong
Things can go wrong when gaming, whether that’s someone being mean, inappropriate or asking you to do something that you’re not comfortable with. It’s important that you and your child know what steps you can take in the game to block and report people and how to report and seek support from other services.