Sixth formers warn younger children over online safety | London

Sixth formers from Townley Grammar School in Bexleyheath have taken on the role of teachers to highlight the potential dangers of using the internet to primary school children. It comes as a survey of 6,500 children and teenagers reveals that nearly half don’t think social media companies consider safety when developing new products.

The older children told the younger students about some of the potential dangers they could face online as well as how to tackle cyber bullying. The primary school pupils said it was good to hear about warning signs from their older peers.

A survey of 6,500 children published today by the BCS The Chartered Institute for IT found nearly half of those asked don’t think social media companies consider their safety when developing new products. Nearly two-thirds called on social media firms to publish how much bullying actually takes place on their sites. A similar number of children and teenagers felt that social media giants should delete abusive messages before a complaint is made.

Social media company Instagram says it takes online safety seriously and Facebook says it works to ensure it offers a safe and secure environment.

Keeping Instagram a safe and supportive place, is our top priority – particularly when it comes to young people. We have zero tolerance for bullying and have invested in a number of features and technologies to help people feel safe on Instagram, including automatic blocking of offensive comments, the ability to control who can comment on or see your content, and in-app reporting tools

– Michelle Napchan, Instagram

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