Q & A
I’m worried about something I’ve seen online, but I feel like I can’t really tell anyone about it. What do I do?
It’s always better to talk to someone rather than keeping something worrying you all to yourself. Talk to a friend or if there’s another adult you trust (like a friendly teacher, or relative) then they may be the best people to help you. If you need to talk about a problem but you're not sure where to start some advice is available here.
You can also speak to people at ChildLine by calling 0800 1111 or visiting their website – www.childline.org.uk. ChildLine is there for young people of all ages to speak to someone in confidence. The call won’t show up on a phone-bill.
My friend is trying to get me to use a random webcam chatroom, a bit like Chatroulette – what are the risks?
There’s always a risk about what you might see on these chatrooms. It’s no secret that a lot of creepy weirdos go on these random cam-to-cam chatrooms to masturbate –which could be awkward and embarrassing for you (and them). The biggest risk is what you tell random strangers. Don’t reveal any bits of information that could help someone identify you and trace your family, or your friends. Watch out for anything in the background when you’re on cam that could help someone do this!
Finally, remember that people can record webcam videos – they could be playing a fake video back to you, or they could be recording what you’re doing when you’re chatting with them. If anyone does anything on webcam that makes you feel worried, you can get help here [insert hyperlink to get help page]
I’m worried someone’s recorded me on webcam – what should I do?
If someone has recorded you doing something embarrassing and they’re threatening to share it you should:
- Stop talking to them and block them.
- Gather all the information you have (the site it’s happened on, their online names, email addresses, etc.) and immediately tell an adult you trust or, if you don’t want to do that, report them to CEOP. Whatever has happened, CEOP will understand and help to make it stop.
If you feel like you need to talk to someone in confidence you can contact ChildLine on 0800 1111.
Find out more about how to stay safe when chatting online, including over webcam webcam.
My friend’s been stripping over webcam with someone they met online. The other person’s webcam never seems to be working – should my friend be worried?
Getting naked on cam is never a good idea. Your friend could easily be being recorded by the other person and the videos shared without them knowing about it.
The internet also makes it very easy for people to hide their identities. Perhaps your friend might think they are talking to someone their age, but there is no way of your friend really knowing who that person is or that what they are doing is being kept private.
You should encourage your friend to stop contacting the person. Advice about talking to your friend about why you're worried about them is available here. If the person is encouraging your friend to strip on webcam they are breaking the law. If they threaten your friend you should report to CEOP. Ideally your friend should save any conversations they have had, and take notes of any personal details that could help identify the other person involved.
If they won’t stop and you are worried about them then the right thing to do is to tell a trusted adult and get them to help you report what is happening to CEOP.
If you want to talk to someone in confidence you can contact ChildLine on 0800 1111.
Find out more about the risks of chatting with strangers over webcam here.
I go on cam and have sent pics loads of times and nothing has happened to me. Why do you think I’m at risk?
The main reason is that if you decide to send naked images or videos of yourself you could be leaving yourself vulnerable to being blackmailed, bullied or groomed by people online. It can also have an effect on your future prospects for education or employment.
Find out more about the risks and how to take control of your reputation online here.