is short for electronic mail, and that’s exactly what it is! Instead of writing letters to friends and family by hand you can type your message and send it right away! Since email is delivered over the Internet, email messages are received almost instantly.
Popular email providers**
Why it’s great
Email is one of the most used forms of communicating online, and many email providers give users a free email address and storage space. Emails can also ‘mail’ more than just text. You can attach different types of files like photos, videos and documents to your message.
The not so great
Email is often used to deliver unwanted messages like Spam. Spam emails, which usually come from someone you don’t know, can contain nasty images, links to websites that younger users shouldn’t see or have viruses and email worms hidden in an attached file. Opening emails from people you don’t know can hurt your computer or trick you into entering personal information on a website.
While email seems private, it can be intercepted and read by people you don’t know. Also, once you’ve sent an email you can’t unsend it. Whoever you sent the email to can forward your email to anyone. That’s why it’s never a good idea to send personal information, photos or nasty comments. You don’t know where they’ll end up.
Explore it together!
Keeping your family computer safe and personal information private is a team effort. If you’re ever unsure about an email, show it to a trusted adult right away. Also, remind each other to update your computer’s anti-virus program every week.
Top concerns for email:
Never open an email from someone you don’t know. It could contain a virus or nasty image. Delete them right away!
Only send photos over email to people you know in the real world. People you meet online sometimes lie about who they are and why they want your photo.
Never reply to emails that come from bullies. Replying gives them attention and a reason to keep bullying.
Always have a trusted adult help you keep anti-virus software up-to-date.
Email is never fully private! Respect other people’s feeling and don’t send personal information.
Get more tips on how you can make email safer for your kids
Model good email behaviour by never replying to spam or forwarding chain e-mail letters.
Always run attachments through an anti-virus program.
Anti-virus and anti-spyware software are helpful, but must be kept up-to-date every few days. Using a firewall is also recommended.