Parents have a role to play in trying to keep their children as safe as possible when online. Dating services are not designed for children and are not offered to anyone under 18. Dating services have arrangements in place to prevent access by under 18s and will take action if they do find anyone underage on their services. However parents should be aware that there are steps they can take to prevent their children accessing certain apps and content.
Parental controls which can be set up on smartphones, networks and gadgets, can be used to block upsetting or harmful content, restrict access to apps like dating services that are unsuitable for their age, and can also help you manage how long children spend online.
Internet Matters is a not-for-profit organisation created to empower parents and carers to keep children safe in the digital world. Internet Matters provides step by step guides to help parents set up the right controls and privacy settings on the smartphones, networks, gadgets, apps and sites that children use, giving them a safer online experience. Internet Matters recognise that controlling the access a device gives is just one tool in ensuring online safety and their website contains advice and guidance on how to discuss these issues with children to best effect.
Practical information on smartphone and other controls and other assistance from Internet Matters can be found here.