The UK’s independent authority set up to uphold information rights in the public interest, promoting openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.

The Information Commissioner's Office is the UK's independent authority based around upholding personal information rights. The internet is a great resource for children in both learning and social interaction, and as more young people start using it at an earlier age, it becomes vital to teach them about protecting their information online.

Teaching internet safety as part of PSHE lessons is a great opportunity to give children the tools and knowledge to take control of their online presence, and understand the value of their personal information and how to protect it.

The ICO has provided PSHE lesson plans for primary and secondary levels to cover all the key areas of personal information and internet safety:

  • What personal data is and why it's important.
  • How personal information is used.
  • How to keep personal and private information safe.
  • What our rights are.

You can also view our infographic on protecting children's personal information online.

Protecting personal information is an essential part of adult life, and understanding how it is used by different organisations is key to making informed decisions about what to share online. Around 88% of secondary school children have social networking profiles where they broadcast information about themselves, and publicly communicate with friends and commercial entities.

However, most school children have little idea how their information might be used by social networking sites and commercial organisations, and are not aware of their rights regarding its use. They often also aren't aware of best practices when it comes to personal security, passwords, and private information.

Our PSHE resources provide guidance for enjoyable and interactive plans to get pupils engaged with the subject of internet safety, and give teachers a flexible plan for active learning and encouraging student discussion. Each lesson is set out with detailed aims and objectives, and includes accompanying PowerPoint slides to provide visual teaching aids. They're also designed to be flexible and adaptable so teachers can customise the materials to suit their own requirements.