What Is Online Safety?

Contributor: Jay Gregorio. Lesson ID: 13225

From cyber-bullying to internet fraud to phishing, potential online dangers continue to rise, making the need for e-safety more relevant than ever! Learn ways to avoid becoming a victim!


Communications, Practical Life Skills

learning style
Auditory, Visual
personality style
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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  • Do you know if what you do online is safe?

Take this safety quiz and find out!

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  • Have you ever played Fortnite?

Edward loves online gaming, and Fortnite is his favorite. He spends more time there with his virtual friends than his school friends.

Most players start with code names but open up and exchange real names and information after a while. For most, this is harmless, but Edward was not so lucky.

using computer securely

Edward did not know much when he first started playing Fortnite. He met Gary, who was always there and willing to help. Gary was willing to use Edward's password and play on his behalf to increase his chance of survival in the game.

One day, Edward's mom confronted him about her account's $400 online purchases. Gary had been using Edward's account to buy V-Bucks, the game's currency!

The revelation doesn't stop there. Edward also discovered that Gary was not a teenager like him but a 35-year-old, unemployed man who purchases and resells V-Bucks to other players to make money.

It was too late for Edward to change his password, and the "Gary" he knew online no longer existed. Edward did not know enough about who "Gary" was to get his money back.

What Is Internet Safety?

Internet safety, or e-safety or online safety, is simply protecting yourself digitally by increasing your knowledge of safety practices and reducing your risks of compromising your private information.

Recent statistics show that 95% of teens in the US are online, and most access the internet via their mobile devices.

Some popular activities include social media, video streaming, and online gaming. The greatest internet-related risks include online scams, cyberbullying, and identity theft.

All of us are vulnerable online, but there are things you can do to increase the likelihood of safety!

Personal vs. Private Information

You can post personal information such as your favorite show, the type of music you like, or your opinions about sports.

However, you should always avoid posing any private information such as your full name, mailing address, email address, and phone number.

Pictures Say a Lot

Pictures say a lot about you as a person. Think carefully before posting pictures or videos of yourself.

Once you've put a picture of yourself online, most people can see it and may be able to download it. It's not just yours anymore.

Privacy Settings

Private information, such as usernames and passwords, should be kept in a secure place and not shared with anyone, even your best friends.

Some websites recommend keeping your privacy settings as high as possible by updating your passwords regularly to lower the risks of being hacked.

Virtual Friendships

Chatting with or meeting someone you just met online is risky behavior. They may seem nice to you, but you have no true way of knowing what their intentions are.

Every day, there are cases of internet fraud or phishing, which is obtaining private information. Criminal activity worse than theft is also a genuine danger.

Be Respectful

Respect other people's views.

Social media is not an avenue to rant, express anger, or discredit someone's character. You cannot expect people to always agree with you, so you must be mindful of how you speak with and about others.

Think before you click.

Stay Alert

If you see something online that makes you feel uncomfortable, unsafe, or worried, leave the website, turn off your computer, and tell a trusted adult immediately.

If you ever receive or happen upon a link with an unrecognizable source, do not open it! You may encounter graphics that are violent or pornographic by accessing sites that are unfamiliar to you.

Learn more as you watch the video below.

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There is no denying that the internet is an advantageous invention.

However, it has also become one of the most dangerous places to be when you do not practice safety. Protect yourself so you can enjoy the wonders of the internet!

Let's review some safe and unsafe practices in the Got It? section.

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