How To Keep Your Kids Safe Online In 2021
Nowadays, children are using computers, smartphones, and internet-connected devices at younger ages. The more time they spend online, the more dangerous it is. Internet is a great place to spend time. However, it is also a very dangerous place to hang out – particularly for children.
According to the recent study of AVG, they have found out that less than half of parents and guardians regularly talk to their kids about online safety. The Center for Cyber Safety and Education released a “Children’s Internet Usage Study” in 2016 that reported on the internet behavior of 4th- to 8th-grade children in the United States. And its findings were shocking.
It turns out that 40% of children are chatting with a complete stranger. Where, 53% revealed their phone number, 15% tried to meet the stranger and 6% revealed their home address. Well, according to the “Children’s Internet Usage Study,” 4th to 8th graders have graduated to doing all-new things us parents wouldn’t approve of:
- 29% are using the internet in ways their parents won’t approve
- 21% visit sites where they can chat with strangers
- 17% are visiting sites with sexual photos or adult videos
- 11% are visiting sites with instructions for cheating on schoolwork
- 4% are visiting gambling sites (little Timmy can count cards??)
Here, we are going to share some ideas about protecting your kids from the dark side of the internet. We’ll look at how to monitor their computer and mobile device usage, how to set parental controls to ensure they can’t view inappropriate content and much more.
Don’t Chat or Meet With Strangers
Remind your children that chatting with strangers is very dangerous and tell them that they can pretend to be your friend as well. You should make it clear that your children should never reveal personal information like their name, address, phone number, school name, or even their friends’ names.
Knowing any of this could help an online predator find your kid in real life. And under no circumstances should your child ever meet up with someone they met online without your permission. If you do agree to a meeting, go with your child and meet in a public place.
As a parent, it’s your job to limit your kids’ screen time, set boundaries for inappropriate content, and make sure your children stick to them. So do it. Talk to your internet service provider about filters you can use to block pornographic or violent websites.
If you limit your child’s online time, you decrease the chance they’ll stumble upon something they shouldn’t. Decide up front how much screen time you’ll allow each day and share that information with your child.
Check Their Browsing History
You should make a habit of checking your child’s online viewing history. Here’s how to do it. You can do this on all of their devices–computers, iPads, and cell phones. If the history has been erased, or is set to private, casually ask your child about it.
Know Your Children’s Passwords
Tell your children that you will need to have their passwords for all of their devices and for all of their social media sites. Once you have the passwords, check these sites regularly to see what your child is seeing and posting.
Discuss The Dangers Of The Internet
You should have a discussion about the dangers of the internet with your children. You should make them aware of Malware, Dangerous Websites and sex offenders. Talk openly and honestly about what’s out there and the kind of stuff they want to avoid.
You can expect a bit of grumbling from some quarters when you shut down some of the access they may have had in the past or were expecting to have when they received their new computer or mobile device. However, they’ll thank you for keeping them safe when they get older and have kids of their own – and that’s what really matters.