Keeping Kids Safe Online: 5 Tips Parents Need to Know
In 2018, 47% of young people had received nasty messages online and 40% of kids who use the internet had shared personal information with strangers.
It makes you want to throw your kid's phone or tablet away forever, doesn't it?
But that's not the solution. Keeping kids safe online is about setting boundaries and educating them, more than it is about banning them from using the internet.
Learn how you can start doing this with your kid with our five online safety tips!
1. Start a Conversation
If you want your kid to be open with you, you need to set the example. That's one of the biggest mottos when it comes to parenting and it's certainly useful to keep your kid safe online.
So, when your child starts to show interest in spending time online, tell them about issues like cyberbullying, cyberstalking, scams, and the like. Encourage them to report when they find something that doesn't seem right.
Remember that the goal is not to scare them, but to make them aware of what they can find and what they should do.
2. Have the Computer in a Common Area
This way, it becomes difficult for your child to hide and do something they're not supposed to.
While your kid is still young, their internet usage should be supervised. So when you walk past them, take a quick look at the screen just to make sure everything's fine.
3. Limit Internet Time
Now more than ever, it's important to ensure that your kid doesn't become too attached to the online world.
Limiting their internet usage will force them to take on other hobbies and establish a healthy, non-sedentary routine. In the long run, this can prevent many mental and physical health issues.
4. Know Your Child's Passwords
Your child should always ask you before creating any type of online account, and it's in your hands to set that as a rule.
When they ask you if they can join a website, make sure it's age-appropriate. If so, create the account with them and don't forget to save the password. Let your kid know that you'll check their account if you feel like something is wrong.
5. Check Their Browser History
No, we're not telling you to spy on your child. That will damage the confidence they have in you. Instead, let them know that they're not allowed to clean their browser history, because you'll be checking it from time to time.
If you see anything suspicious, ask them about it and make sure it's all safe and sound.
Keeping Kids Safe Online: Better Safe Than Sorry
Unfortunately, the dangers of the internet are very real.
But you should remember that it has benefits too. Your kid gets to stay up-to-date with all that's happening in the world, keep in touch with friends who moves to other cities or even countries, learn new skills and more.
So rather than trying to eliminate the internet from your kid's life, teach them how to use it properly and set rules for safety.
Keeping kids safe online is possible and it's in the hands of us, grown-ups.
If you have any questions about online safety, feel free to contact us!
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