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Friday, September 20, 2013

Tips to Keep Your Children Safe While They Surf the Internet

According to Pew Research Center, two-thirds of parents monitor their children's digital footprints. Approximately 40 percent follow their children on Twitter and Facebook. Previously, parents were advised to keep the computer in a place that was easily visible. However, mobile technology has rendered this form of protection useless. That is why you need to learn how to teach your children to keep themselves safe while they surf the Internet.

Communication is Key

Try out the services that your children are interested in. This will allow you to attain full benefits from these services and even receive an alert if there is any kind of problem.
Some apps and services allow parents to limit the information collected. Make sure you pay attention to the permissions that each app requests.


Tell Your Children What to Watch Out For 
  • Make sure your children know not to click on links or open email from people they do not know. These links could lead to inappropriate websites, malicious software or sites that try to trick them into giving personal information. 
  • If someone is cyberbullying them or mentions things that make them feel uncomfortable, they need to log off. Social networking sites and services have reporting tools or email addresses where you can report this type of abuse. If the message is threatening, contact your local police department to file a report. 

If you or your children receive images or messages that are: 
  • Lewd, indecent, obscene or filthy with the intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass you;
Or 
  • You or your children become aware of the viewing, use or transmission of child pornography over the Internet, report this incident to the CyberTipline or call 1-800-843-5678.

Set Specific Guidelines

Give your children guidelines to follow so they know exactly where you stand. Make sure to enforce consequences when your children breach these guidelines. Keep an open dialogue with your child. Explain the reasons behind Internet restrictions and encourage them to come to you with questions or concerns.

Online Monitoring Tools and Filters

Safety software is an effective way to keep your children from viewing inappropriate and dangerous content. Many Internet service providers offer parents the technology to block these materials from entering their child's computer. You can find the perfect Internet provider by combining package options with filtering tools to keep your children safe. This software typically comes with other tools like keystroke recognition, remote monitoring and reporting, as well as time management.
Even though filtering tools can block some of what children see, they may not block what they say. Staying informed is the most effective way to keep your children safe.

Written & Edited by Anthony Gonzalez for Child Quest International

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