Our kids are digital natives – as soon as they are born, technology surrounds them. It’s the integral part of their daily lives, and ours too. Whilst technology is not inherently bad, and therefore eliminating it completely is not the right approach, you need to ensure they are safe when using it.
Online safety is growing in importance and is now just as important as road safety for your kids. So, here are five ways to keep them safe while they explore the online world:
Get Familiar with Parental Controls
The best way to make sure your kids don’t stumble upon inappropriate websites and content is to limit access to such sites. Most devices today come with parental controls, so make sure you set passwords and limits to all content that is not intended for your kid’s eyes.
Talk with Them about Online Safety
Remember how your parents taught you about never talking to strangers? The same goes for the online world. Explain to your kids they shouldn’t reveal any personal or sensitive information or talk to people they don’t know. Explain that when online, it’s much easier to pretend you are someone else, and teach them about cyber security from an early age.
Get a Quality ISP
Your ISP can help you protect your children online. Even if the internet coverage might be scarce in your area, you can find a quality provider that offers satellite for internet services with great download speeds and specific security packages. Chances are, they will at least have parental control built into their network gear (router) that will enable you to block access to websites you don’t want your kids to visit.
Change Passwords Regularly
Make sure your kids always have to get a new password when they want to browse online. You can do so by changing the password each day and sharing it with them once they are done with all their chores or homework. This will also help you teach them to take care of their responsibilities first.
Know What They Are Doing Online
While some parents think spying on your kids is all kinds of wrong, it’s not a bad idea to at least be familiar with the websites they visit or the apps and games they enjoy. When you know what they are up to, you won’t worry as much. By knowing what type of interactions they can have online, you’ll also know how to teach them that manners are as important online as they are in the real world.
Keeping your kids safe online is much more than just setting limits to browsing and gaming. When you are familiar with the websites they like, apps they use, and games they play, you will know exactly what they are facing online. Talk with them openly, and educate them and yourself too.