Online safety parent toolkit

Netsafe is committed to supporting parents, whānau and caregivers as they guide their children through life online – particularly in this rapidly changing world.

With Netsafe research showing that New Zealand teenagers are having harmful online experiences at a rate substantially higher than adults, it’s essential parents know what to do, which is why Netsafe created the Online Safety Parent Toolkit. 

The Toolkit is a practical and straightforward seven-step framework to give every parent access to the support they need to teach their kids how to access digital opportunities and reduce harm.

By working through the framework, parents will get to a place where they can confidently speak to their children about their online activities and help them avoid or minimise possible harm.

The seven-step framework helps parents to: 

  1. Understand potential risks, challenges and sometimes illegal behaviours
  2. Learn about their tamariki’s activities
  3. Explore for themselves the technology their child uses
  4. Agree and set expectations as a family on what to do online
  5. Teach basic online safety concepts
  6. Model the behaviours you want to see your child use
  7. Plan what to do if things go wrong.

Netsafe’s Parent Toolkit is guided by the whakataukī (proverb): Ko te mahi a te tamariki, he wāwāhi tahā (the activities of children break calabashes). Tamariki and rangatahi (youth) are naturally inquisitive and making mistakes and encountering risk is often part of exploring. As parents and whānau, it’s our responsibility to guide young people through these challenges openly and safely.  

The Toolkit can be used by anyone – from parents who are already helping their child with their online activities through to parents who are new to digital parenting.

Netsafe is available seven days a week to provide free, confidential, non-judgemental help and expert incident advice to people in Aotearoa.

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