This section provides you with information on issues relating to online safety, such as how to protect your children from inappropriate Web sites, and how to ensure the security of your home computer on the Internet. Also in this section is information on the regulatory regime governing the Internet in Australia. We encourage you to read the following information and if you have any further questions please contact the relevant bodies listed, or TPG on 13 14 23.
At TPG we are proud to promote positive user relations with the Internet Industry by encouraging the awareness of the Internet Industry Codes of Practice.
The Internet Industry Codes of practice can be viewed by clicking here.
The codes of practise are registered with and monitored by the The Australian Communications and Media Authority, for further information regarding the ACMA see below.
The Internet Industry Association (IIA) is Australia's national Internet industry organisation. Members include telecommunications carriers, content creators and publishers, web developers, e-commerce traders and solutions providers, hardware vendors, systems integrators, banks, insurance underwriters, Internet law firms, ISPs, educational and training institutions, Internet research analysts, and a range of other businesses providing professional and technical support services. On behalf of its members, the IIA provides policy input to government and advocacy on a range of business and regulatory issues, to promote laws and initiatives which enhance access, equity, reliability and growth of the medium within Australia.
The IIA has prepared a guide to assist Australian Internet users understand Australia's co-regulatory framework for online content. The Guide for Internet Users can be view by clicking here.
If you feel the codes of practice have somehow been breeched, you should forward your complaint to the IIA using the below contact information:
Postal Address for all correspondence:
PO Box 3986,
ACT 2603 Australia
Phone: (02) 6232 6900
Fax: (02) 6232 6513
The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is an independent federal statutory authority responsible for the regulation of free-to-air radio, television, pay TV, digital broadcasting and Internet content in Australia.
The ACMA works with the Internet industry and the community advisory body, NetAlert, to help ensure that people's use of the Internet is a positive experience and children, in particular, are protected from material that is unsuitable for them. View the ACMA website for information and advice about safe Internet usage for kids and adults, by clicking here.
If you would like to make a complaint about Internet Content, you should first make a complaint to the owner of the site. The owner should tell you how they intend to deal with the complaint and what opportunities are available to you to take the matter further. If you are dissatisfied with their response or if they do not answer your complaint within 60 days, you may then complain to the ACMA.
PO Box Q500,
Queen Victoria Building
NSW 1230 Australia
Phone: 1800 226 667 (Australia only)
Fax: (02) 9334 7799
Stay Smart Online is an Australian Government Initiative designed to provide all Australian online users with practical tips and advice on e-security. This website contains basic information on how to secure your computer, best practice tips for smart transacting online, and information on keeping young people safe online. The website is hosted by the Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts on behalf of the Australian Government and has received input and support from a range of other Australian Government agencies which have related responsibilities.
One of the ways of minimising the risk of illegal and/or offensive content, and managing your children/s use of the Internet, is to use a content filtering software product. The following content filtering solutions are included in the list of Family Friendly Filters approved by the IIA. Click on the links below to go to the relevant website where the software and usage instructions are available to download:
- AOL PARENTAL CONTROL
- ARLINGTON CUSTOM BROWSER
- CONTENT KEEPER
- CYBER PATROL
- CYBER SENTINEL
- INTERNET SHERIFF
- NET NANNY
- TOO C.O.O.L
- SMART FILTER
For general security purposes you should regularly change your password. You should keep your password secret, don't ever write it down and leave it near your or any other computer.
A chat room or Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is a place on the Internet where people with similar interests can meet and communicate together by typing messages on their computer. The messages in a chat room appear instantly to everybody who is connected to that particular chat room. As chat rooms are a potential danger to children there are a few guidelines that they should follow. Netalert recommends the following should be used as a guideline:
- Never reveal any details that could be used to physically trace you, such as your real name, address, phone number, school name and friend’s name.
- If something appears on the screen in front of you, and you find it disturbing, you should let your parents, teacher or friends know.
- If you hear or see your friends not doing the right thing in a chat room, remind them of the potential dangers and how to do the right thing.
- Chat rooms are great ways to talk to people but beware that some people in them are not who they say they are. If someone, or something, disturbs you in a chat room, leave the chat room and find one where there are people you like.
- Remember not everything you read in chat rooms is true and people may not be who they say they are. Be smart and make decisions for yourself on what you think is right and wrong.
- Let your parents know when you have made a new friend online. If you want to meet this new person face-to-face, you must let your parents, teacher, carer or other responsible adult know that you have organised to meet someone.
For more information, visit the Netalert website.
Netalert is Australia’s Internet safety advisory body, established by the Australian Government to provide independent advice and education on managing access to online content. The Netalert website has special sections for both parents and kids, with advice on web safety, particularly how to protect children from unsuitable Internet content and other dangers.
The ACMA’s website, Cybersmart Kids Online is a must for kids who use the Internet, and for parents. The website has lists of safety rules for kids of different age groups, to advise what they should do and be aware of when surfing the Internet. To view these safety rules, click here.
- Communicate regularly (not just once) with your children about what they do online and to whom they talk online.
- Take computers out of childrens' rooms and put them into communal areas of the home, such as the family room or living room.
- Help your child choose their ‘screen name’, email address or instant messaging name wisely.
- Parents are urged to consider using technology, specifically software to help you protect your child.
Follow the link for more information: Resources for Parents on Supervising Children's Access.