Best Ways to Protect Children Online
Guest Post By: Julie Hughes
The rate of internet usage among children has increased steadily since the turn of the century. According to a 2018 study by the National Centre for Education Statistics, 94 percent of children (3-18 years old) in the US have access to the internet at home via a smartphone or a computer. The rise of social media, as well as the widespread adoption of smartphones, has definitely introduced a new furrow in the challenges of parenting.
Raising children is a tough old job, more so in the digital age where kids of all ages are potentially exposed to numerous threats lurking in the dark corners of the internet. Exposure to inappropriate online content at a young age can cause serious damage to their developing personalities, for instance. There’s also the danger of online predators, individuals with sinister motives looking for an opportunity to take advantage of innocent children.
Tips for Parents to Help Their Children Stay Safe Online
The internet may be a dangerous place, but it also has a lot of positives. According to a recent UNICEF report, blanket restriction on kids’ access to the internet keeps them from taking advantage of critical learning skills and development opportunities. Parents still teach their children how to cross a busy street safely and responsibly despite the presence of danger. In the same way, parents ought to help their children navigate the world wide web.
Here are five tips for parents to help their children stay safe online.
Social Media Privacy
Every kid has an Instagram account these days. Parents should teach their children the importance of keeping their privacy on social media. In not doing so, the kids are exposing themselves to all kinds of dangers out there.
One of the most effective ways to make sure that your kids don’t view inappropriate content is using the parental control feature. Most video streaming platforms have some level of parental control. For instance, your kids should use YouTube for kids instead of regular YouTube.
Hackers often break into computers and other devices by guessing passwords. Using a simple and commonly used password makes it easy for hackers to access your device. Teach your kids to use strong passwords for protection against fraud and identity theft.
Use a VPN
A Virtual Private Network (VPN) masks your IP address and encrypts your internet traffic. Downloading a VPN for security on all your children’s devices is essential. Also, teach your children about the dangers of using public Wi-Fi in school or at the mall.
From cyberbullying to inappropriate content and online predators, the digital space is wrought with numerous risks, especially for young children. At the same time, the world wide web also offers critical learning and skills development opportunities for young ones. As parents, instead of preventing our children from accessing the internet, we should focus on helping them navigate the online world safely and responsibly.
Our thanks to Julie Hughes for contributing this post about the best ways to protect children online. Do you have some kid’s safety tips that you would like to share with our readers? If you do, and you have the time to write a short article, you could become one of our featured guest posters. For more information on how to get a guest post on Best Panic Alarm, please read our guest post submission guidelines. We hope to hear from you soon!