In this digital age, when there are such things as virtual offices and online identities, most people have an online presence by way of blogs and social networking sites. Keeping watch over your kids now extends online. Aside from keeping them safe in the real world, it is also important to keep them safe on the internet, especially from cyber bullies and internet predators. Here is a guide that aims to give you tips on how to keep your children safe on the internet.
Parents often implement rules for their kids to follow. They want to know who their children’s friends are and where they go when they leave the house. They also sometimes provide a chaperone and ground their kids from certain privileges when they do something bad, such as tell a lie or disobey the rules at home. Parents do all these to teach their kids how to be responsible and to keep them safe. Like in the real world, you may also have to implement some rules for your children to follow whenever they use the computer.
Giving them rules when they use the internet can help your children learn how to use information technology responsibly and more importantly, keep them safe. Sadly, the online world is not as safe as most people would like to believe. There are children who have been put in dangerous situations for meeting strangers online. There have also been reports of people who committed suicide from being victims of cyber bullying.
Here are some of the things that you might want to consider doing to teach your children how to be responsible online and how to protect them from cyber bullies and stalkers on the internet.
Teach your kids the concept of internet safety. Explain to your children why it is important to implement guidelines when they use the computer and the internet. It can help to tell them how online threats can become real world dangers, such as deciding to meet with a person they have just met in an online chat room or when they spend their savings on an item offered to them by a stranger in an e-mail.
Implement guidelines. Consider creating rules and guidelines that your kids should follow whenever they use the internet. Try to answer their why’s so they understand the importance of those rules. They are not supposed to be allowed to approve friend requests from someone they do not know outside of Facebook, for example, to keep them safe from potential scammers and online predators. It is also important that they know what your expectations are when they use the internet when you are not around.
Know what your kids are doing online. Knowing what your kids do while on the internet is not just about sitting beside them while they browse websites. One of the best ways to know what your kids do online is to join in on the fun. Add your child and their friends on Facebook so you get an idea of what it is what they do and what they are busy with. If your kids have been talking about Instagram and Twitter, try to sign up for an account and check your child’s updates yourself.
Take advantage of computer security tools. There are a lot of software and applications that you can use to track, and even limit your child’s online activity. It is also as important that you have security tools installed in your computer such as antivirus software and firewalls to keep your computer and family safe from malicious files that are distributed all over the internet.