Navigating the minefield of viruses and spam-filled websites is tricky enough as an adult so it is understandable if your kids aren’t sure how they should avoid online threats. As a parent you should not just allow your child the freedom of the internet but nor should you block every website there is. Somewhere between the two is ideal, and these simple steps will best prepare your children for the online world.
Use parental controls
Most laptops and computers you can get these days come with inbuilt options for parental controls; customise these settings to suit your children. You can block various types of content that your child could potentially stumble upon which means you will have peace of mind letting your children use the computer unattended. You cannot always watch them when they are online and parental controls are perfect for these occasions.
Get a good antivirus/spyware
It is not just what your children might see online that can harm them, but also hidden threats they can be completely unaware of. Anyone at any time can accidentally download a virus or stumble across a website that can steal personal information so you must have software that is on the lookout for these risks. Children as young as 11 have written malicious code in the past, so your kids must be made aware of the risks.
Remind them about sharing information
Chat rooms, fan sites and forums are good places for your children to meet like-minded people but there are always rules they must follow just as in the real world. Remind them not to share their full name, address, phone number or photograph. This is information that can be used for all the wrong reasons in the wrong hands, so teach them to use these websites safely.
Encourage them to keep passwords secret
This is a good habit for adults and children alike and it also stretches to emails that ask for their details or users online. Encourage them to even keep their passwords secret from you; if they don’t tell you they certainly won’t tell a stranger.
Also see Childalerts;
Zip it Block Flag it – click here
Tips for online safety – click here
Over a quarter of young people say their parents never talk to them about Online Safety - click here