Parents will do everything just to keep their children well and safe, from making sure they have sunscreen on before going out in the sun to being careful when crossing the street. But with the technology that we have today, there’s one more thing that parents should protect their children from predators, bullies, and inappropriate content that they can find on the internet. Because let’s admit it, the internet is going nowhere, and kids nowadays like to spend their time online. That is why if you’re a parent and you want to keep your child safe on the internet, read along because we are going to give you some tips.
Openly talk with your child about the things they do online
If you notice that your child is spending his or her time on the internet, do not hesitate to start a conversation about what they are reading, playing, watching, or communicating with online. Remember to keep this type of conversation as they grow older. Be mindful of the websites they visit and the applications they are using. Along with this, it is also best if you teach them about their reputation online and remind them how they should behave and interact with people.
Know your child’s online friends
Children and young people can be naïve about who they are interacting with online, especially if they are not taught to be cautious about being online. That is why as parents or guardians, you have to make sure you also know your child’s contacts and friends in their social media circles.
Keep their gadgets where you can see them
Remember to put the computer in place in your house where it is easy to see so that you can monitor what your child is watching and doing while they are online. If they are using their tablet, laptop, or smartphone, you can put them in a guided access mode so that you can determine the applications and sites they can access. We suggest that you check their browsing history from time to time and see what sites they are visiting for younger children.
Keep track of their online time
According to experts, children between the age of five and seventeen should have no more than two hours of screen time every day. That is why you should monitor your child’s online time, especially younger children. Make sure that they do not get hooked on being online by setting rules and boundaries.
Teach your children to keep their location private
Today, almost every application, device, and networks have geo-tagging features, enabling you to share your whereabouts online easier. However, this can be a safety issue because it can lead someone directly to you or your child, which is why you have to make sure that this feature is turned off on all of your child’s devices. It helps if you keep your child well-informed about not sharing too much information on the internet.
Keep control of their digital footprint
Make sure that your child understands that every detail and pictures they post on their social media accounts and the internet will contribute to their digital footprint. Ensure that every information they share publicly can be used in ways that they cannot control. Please remind your child that everything they put on the internet stays permanent because someone could save it even after deleting it.
That is why it helps if you teach your child to be smart about protecting their information and images online. Teach them to stay in control of their digital footprint by encouraging them to use the privacy settings on their social media accounts and being selective on the information they share.
Teach your kids not to respond to messages from strangers
Talking to someone you just met on the internet can be risky because you would not know if they pose a threat or use a fake identity. Tell your kids to call you if any suspicious people are bothering them online.
Be an example
The best way to keep your child safe online is to lead by example. Be the kind of person that you would like your children to be. If your child sees that you are cautious and respectable when you’re using the internet, chances are they will follow in your footsteps.
Do not prevent your child from experiencing the entertainment, educational, and social benefits of the internet. Do not instill fear in your child, but rather teach them the knowledge and skills they need to know about the internet and how they can make the most of it.