The internet offers people almost limitless potential to enjoy, communicate, research and create. However, as we all know, the open nature of the internet also means security, safety and privacy are keen concerns.
Across multiple initiatives, Microsoft UK is dedicated to working with technology industry leaders, charities, governments and schools to address technology abuses so we can all enjoy the internet more safely.
Keeping Children Safer
Microsoft believes strongly that the internet should be a safer place for young people and adults alike. We work with the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) centre. They, in turn, work in partnership with the Department for Children, Families and Schools (DCFS), police forces, offender managers, children's services and other stakeholders in protecting children, young people, families and society as a whole from paedophiles and sex offenders; in particular those who use the internet and other new technologies in the sexual exploitation of children.
Over 200 of our employees have supported CEOP in their industry training programme (PROTECT), in which they visit schools to educate young people on the safe use of the internet. To date our volunteers have educated in excess of 30,000 young people.
We also support the education of parents in online safety by training our employees and partners to deliver presentations at schools and to provide useful links and resources for parents – see below for more information on our parent’s presentations.
CEOP uses our Child Exploitation Tracking System (CETS) software solution. Built using open industry standards, CETS provides a set of advanced software tools and technologies to support law-enforcement officials in their work to stop the exploitation of children on the internet.
Find out more about our work with CEOP
Playsmart Playsafe - Xbox 360
The Xbox 360 has new easy-to-use parental controls, which allows parents and caregivers to set the appropriate environment and decide which games their children can play based on game ratings.
Information on these, and a wealth of other resources for gamers and their families, are available online at www.playsmartplaysafe.eu. This regularly updated website includes instructions, advice, blogs and a range of tools and information to help gamers enjoy a safer gaming experience, for all the family.
UK Safer Internet Centre
Microsoft fully supports the work of the UK Safer Internet Centre, raising awareness of safe internet use for children, and we mobilise our employees every February for Safer Internet Day. The UK Safer Internet Centre is co-funded by the European Commission and is a partnership of three leading organisations, Childnet International, the South West Grid for Learning and the Internet Watch Foundation.
Additionally to the above partnerships, MSN UK has been a long-term associate of the Internet Watch Foundation, an organisation that offers citizens a single point of contact for handling allegations of unlawful internet content such as child pornography.
Parents presentations address the benefits of the internet and the safety concerns around it. It introduces basic information about how young people use technology (such as social networking and online gaming). It is designed to build parents' confidence and improve their understanding of these technologies, as well as to provide guidance and practical advice for safeguarding their children. It also gives advice on where to go for help.
The presentation lasts approximately one hour and includes time for questions from the audience. It incorporates videos that are used by CEOP and Childnet in schools to educate pupils.
About Microsoft volunteers
All our volunteers understand the sensitivity of the subject matter and they are happy to go through the presentation with you prior to a session. There is no fee for having a speaker come to your school.
For information on the Microsoft parents' presentation initiative and how you could set up a presentation for your school or community group, please contact us.
For further information on safety tips and advice on family safety settings across all of our products visit the Microsoft safety and security centre.