5 Most Actionable Tips To Keep Your Children Safer Online
Have you talked to your children about Internet threats and cyber security? Not yet? Well, you are not alone. According to a recent global survey conducted by AVG, only 43% of parents talk to their children about online safety out of 9,500 parents/guardians. So, despite the adoption of a digital lifestyle, it seems that online child safety is still a major subject of conversation in families. Gone are the days when children used to visit relatives' houses, neighbours' places, or grandparents’ place. These days, around 70% of children studying in 4-8 grades have their cell phones, 64% have a tablet and 48% have a personal computer in their bedroom. They use the Internet in a way their parents won't approve as they visit adult sites, gambling sites and chat with strangers. Besides, children get trapped in certain online risks when they visit inappropriate sites for finding future job prospects or make purchases without the permission of their parents.
In such a scenario, parents/ guardians should talk to their children about safe browsing, explain the danger sides of online purchases, malicious sites, different types of cyber-bullying and related topics. Giving the necessary education about online safety to your children in their growing age will be helpful even when they are fully grown. If you avoid talking to your kids about Internet browsing and cyber security, they will go to find the inappropriate stuff available-either on purpose or unintentionally. However, online child safety is the vast topic that is hard to be detailed in just one blog, but here we are highlighting the 5 most actionable tips parents/guardians can apply to keep their children safe from online scams and cyber bullying.
Spend Quality Time with Them:
If you want your kids to spend their time on the internet, make sure that they leverage learning opportunities. For that, you can make the Internet something educational, fun and innocent. This will help them to understand that being online is a family thing. You can sit with them and watch a few educational and interactive videos on YouTube, show them how to use the Internet, play games with them. You need to show the right direction to your children in terms of Internet usage and online safety. The more you spend time with them, the more you will get to know what they watch and hear through the Internet.
Have an Open Conversation:
Have an open conversation with your children about online predators and how talking with strangers, revealing personal information such as name, contact number and address and school name can put them in danger. As they get older and start getting introduced with the new things on the Internet, let them learn about the potential risks of using it appropriately. You should warn them about the dangerous sites, malware and sex offenders. Explain to them how making unwise decisions and hiding things can hurt their futures- as far as their reputation and financial well-being is concerned. Besides, let your children know you are there to listen and looking out for them, so they can speak honestly with you.
The Internet can be a fascinating world for your children, but how much time they spend there becomes a concern. If you notice that your kid is becoming addicted to certain sites or games and staying up all night on the Internet, then this is the time you should for you to set parameters for Internet usage. You can make them clear about the time limits, browsing restrictions, only specific YouTube channels, download and purchasing approvals etc. Also, it is important to adjust the security settings of the social accounts they may have created.
Use a Monitoring App:
Giving access to multiple devices to connect on the Internet makes it hard for parents to supervise the activities of their children when they are online. this is where using a parental control software or app comes into existence. This is not just useful for setting parameters but to track the online behaviour of your children and control what they are doing and watching on their personal computers, cell phones or other devices. Some security suites help you to block access for specific websites and their functions. You can use apps such as Kids Place and Mobicip that limit kids to open other apps and prevent them from downloading inappropriate ones. Along with this, you can use Sophos Home, which is completely free for personal use, where you can decide what to allow and what to block.
Give Them Space:
Monitoring and setting parameters for online child safety doesn't mean keeping an eye on them all the time. You have to give them space and trust them to access the Internet and their connected devices. If you chase them constantly about what they are doing and what they have downloaded, it will be more tempting for them to hide things and do online activities they aren't supposed to do. At a time, they will acknowledge that online actions lead to potential real-life consequences.
Concluding this, spying on your children's activities without their knowledge may weaken their trust in you. Thus, you have to be secretive about it while having an open conversation about online safety and cyber thefts. You should also watch any changes in your children's behavior and pay attention to their social interests.
Apart from the above-mentioned 5 most actionable tips, you can ensure online child safety by opting top-quality network security solutions from any reputable company. CTG Tech is one of the most trusted names in offering the best network security solutions against highly sophisticated cyber threats. They serve in Fort Worth, Dallas, Amarillo, Arlington and many other areas in Texas.