The Children’s Commissioner offers tips on social media protection

The Children’s Commissioner is offering out leaflets to children, explaining their social media rights, in a bid to protect them.

The guides in the leaflets are aimed at the likes of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp and Snapchat.

It will provide information on how much access some companies have to personal information, such as credit card details, your exact location and your contacts.

David Emm, principal security researcher at Kaspersky Lab, said: “We’ve seen that millennials can be unaware of the ways in which their personal data could be used by companies, and demystifying lengthy terms and conditions documents could go some way to solving that. However it is my view that people of all ages could benefit from this kind of education.”

‘Recognising the value of personal data’

In the hope that many students will have a better idea of their rights online, the terms and conditions will be handed out to thousands of teachers up and down the country.

Emm added: “In this era of connected devices and social media we often share important information without a second thought and without fully realising the consequences should this data fall into the wrong hands.

“It is important that the general public recognises the value of personal data – not just to ourselves but to would-be cybercriminals. New data protections laws are designed to make organisations more careful with our data, but regardless of this, it is important that, at an individual level, we know what information is being kept and how it’s being handled – which will also reduce the likelihood of it falling into the wrong hands.

“Being vigilant online – whether when using a work computer, home laptop, mobile or tablet device – needs to become second nature – like road safety. Undertaking simple steps, like regularly changing passwords, reviewing default settings on social media and using Internet security software across all devices can significantly help protect data.”

Written by Leah Alger