As kids head back to the classroom, many of them with new mobile phones (or hand-me-downs), tablets and lap-tops, you may want to get up to speed on how kids can keep their mobile devices secure, avoid bill shock and navigate the internet and the world of social media safely.

So, we've put together some back to school tips:

  • Choose the right mobile device to meet your needs - kids don't necessarily need a smartphone if all you are concerned about is staying in touch while travelling to and from school - an inexpensive, simple "talk and text" phone and prepaid plan could be the best option.
  • Some parents like to encourage re-use by passing on their old smartphone when they upgrade - just make sure your child understands about staying within their data usage limit (or you could even restrict or turn off data) and is on an appropriate plan.
  • Others may choose to buy their child the latest smartphone or tablet for school. This can be quite an investment so you may want to look into insurance options and make sure your child makes use of the device's in-built security and activates a PIN or password. Check with your child's school about their policy on mobile devices at school and talk to you child about how they can keep their device safe and secure.
  • Read our tips on preventing theft and what to do if your phone is lost or stolen.
  • NSW Department of Education's School AtoZ website has some great tips on choosing a mobile for your child. 

ASIC mobile activities

  • Make sure you discuss with your child how and when they should use their phone - for example, are you happy for them to download apps or use social media?  It helps if everyone understands the rules/limits up front.
  • Before you agree on the rules for your family - you may want to check out our tips  and information on:
  1. Cyberbullying - what do do if you are bullied and how to avoid being an bully.
  2. Cybersafety - staying safe online and on social media
  3. Mobile phones in schools - appropriate use policy
  • The Children's eSafety Commissioner's website is a great resource for parents and has specific information about popular games, apps and social media platforms - including information on age restrictions and how to manage privacy settings. It's best to be well-informed and engaged so that you can talk to your child about what apps or social media they are allowed to use and how to use them safely and responsibly.

 

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