Playing games online can be a fantastic past-time for young people, but as parents you may not understand why your child spends so much time playing or how to help keep them safe.
It’s a good idea to keep the computer in a family room. This is so you can monitor the games your child is playing online, to ensure they are age appropriate and also so your child won’t engage in activities that could put them at risk. This also means that children will not have the opportunity to spend hours playing games in the privacy of their bedroom after you have gone to bed!
There are unfortunately some adults who have a sexual interest in children, and will use gaming as a means of grooming them. They may encourage young people to engage in inappropriate behaviour for rewards or cheats. Young people often don’t understand enough about the risks and should be encouraged to talk to an adult they trust if they are engaged by someone in a gaming area. As a parent, it’s vital that you talk to your child and make sure they know how they should behave when they are gaming. They should be encouraged not to accept cheats or talk to people that they don’t know in the real world. If anyone asks them to do anything that makes them feel uncomfortable, they should tell a trusted adult or report their suspicions to CEOP on this website.