March 31st 2020. House Party App. Important message re: online safety.
The House Party app is taking social media by storm. It’s from the same company that created Fortnite. Over the last 48 hours there has been lots of misinformation over social media about it. As with all live-streaming platforms, screenshots, unsolicited messages and self-generated sexualised imagery can put young people at risk.
Links to ‘rooms’ can also be shared publicly – to other platforms which could see uninvited users joining.
‘Rooms’ should be locked to prevent uninvited guests from joining – remember all rooms will lock by default if a user enables ‘private mode’.
If an uninvited guest joins a room they can easily ‘friend’ others taking part in the live stream.
It appears that when a friend is invited, their friends can also join a ‘room’ without the invitation. Therefore potentially increase the opportunity to cyber-bully and troll others.
Please follow this link for more information
West Yorkshire Police has teamed up with the NSPCC, Leeds Safeguarding Children Partnership and the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner in West Yorkshire to encourage parents and carers to have a five minute chat with children to keep them safe online.
A quick discussion with young people about the sites and apps they are using and the people they are talking to online, could help protect them from any potential cyber criminals.
The internet can be an amazing place for children, so they shouldn’t be discouraged from using it, but parents should remind them that people may not always be who they say they are, and they should talk to their parents about what they are doing online.
It can seem daunting for some parents, trying to keep up with the latest technology that their children are using, so the following websites and helplines can offer simple, practical advice on how to keep everyone safe online:
NSPCC and O2 helpline
If you have a question about parental controls or concern about a social network that your child uses, expert advisors are available on the free helpline – 0808 8005002
NSPCC – www.nspcc.org.uk/keeping-children-safe/online-safety/
Leeds Safeguarding Children Partnership – www.leedsscp.org.uk/onlinesafety
CEOP – www.ceop.police.uk
UK Safer Internet Centre - www.saferinternet.org.uk/advice-centre/parents-and-carers
Childnet International - www.childnet.com/parents-and-carers