Young people in Dumbarton and the Vale are being warned not to share passwords or PINS with boyfriends and girlfriends.

This is because friendships and relationships that start innocently at a young age can turn sour later in life, leading to problems such as cyber hacking.

The warning has come from a Government-funded cyber security programme which advises young people about the dangers of so-called ‘re-data-ships’

Cyber Discovery has revealed nearly half of the people surveyed have shared passwords and PINs with boyfriends and girlfriends.

Creator of Cyber Discovery and cyber security expert, James Lyne, said: “Young people are taught about things like ‘stranger danger’ from a young age, but often we concentrate so much on our ‘enemies’ that we forget to think about our friends and partners, particularly when it comes to staying safe online.

“Friendships and relationships constantly change throughout a lifetime, but those that start at a young age can be particularly susceptible to bad break-ups and fallings out.

“We need to teach young people about the importance of protecting their personal data and the risk of ‘re-data-ships’, as it will lead to greater protection later in life.”

The Cyber Discovery re-data-ship guide features rules for young people to follow to protect their online security:

Do not have ‘re-data-ships’ – where you share personal data with friends or partners

Stay away from using your favourite musician or athlete’s name as your password – as well as your birthday, pet’s name etc.

Have different passwords for each site

Use a complex password alongside a password manager tool

Change your passwords regularly