Maintaining your child\’s privacy in the virtual space is necessary. Follow these simple steps to protect them from cybercrime.
Today’s youngsters are tech-savvy. For them, there is no difference between online and offline life. But parents should always watch out for their kid’s safety.
Be it virtual or real life. Some people might say that social media is not for children so they should stay away from it. But famous platforms like Facebook, and Instagram are available for 13-year-olds.
Not only that, anyone can change their age to open accounts on these platforms. If used correctly, social media can bring significant benefits. For example, it enables teenagers to connect with peers from different parts of the world and collaborate with them.
This increases their cultural knowledge. They can contact their relatives instantly using these platforms. Plus, it allows kids to showcase their talent and learn about new skills.
But every innovation has a dark side. In social media, kids often become victims of cyberbullying. They might share private data like addresses, phone numbers, etc without realizing it. Criminals utilize this information for exploitation.
According to the FBI, about 750,000 psychopaths and offenders use these platforms to meet their victims. So it’s essential to protect your kid’s online presence.
Apply these tips to make your child’s online experience positive.
6 Ways To Keep Youngsters Safe Online
1. Have a conversation
Keeping an open line for communication is essential when it comes to kids’ online safety. Discuss what you expect them to follow. Find out how they are planning to use their social media profile.
If your child is thinking about playing a prank on you or taking part in a challenge, ask them to explain it to you first. Listen to them carefully, while they talk about different social media experiences.
Make sure they know the consequences of misusing these platforms.
2. Learn about the platforms that your kid uses
Knowing about your kid’s most used social media platforms gives you an idea about what kind of content they consume. Don’t forget to create an account on those platforms and find out about different privacy settings. Check if there are any options to monitor accounts.
Generally, kids use Tiktok, Snapchat, Instagram, and Reddit. Install them on your phone to see how they work.
3. Teach them why they should not share personal information
This is a crucial step towards a positive social media experience. Instead of just creating rules, explain the reasons behind them. Sharing information about their favorite TV show or new video game is okay.
Ensure that they are not giving away their online passwords, social security numbers, private details, CVV, or credit card details. Teach them what are suspicious activities and how they spot them. Ask them to share whenever they face any tricky situation.
4. Control their privacy settings
Nowadays, most social media platforms provide lots of privacy options. Use them to protect their profile. When they start using social media, keep their account private.
Some applications might share locations with every post. Make sure it is disabled so that strangers can not see your home address. Utilize parental blocks in your home internet network to block inappropriate content.
5. Make Internet rules for family members
Every family member should take part in it so that the child won\’t feel like they are being forced into the process. The main motto of the rule is to maintain the safety of your kid in the virtual space. Two great norms that you can follow are
- People in the house will use social media for a certain time frame.
- Nobody will accept unknown people in their network.
You can add more to the list. There are many templates of parent-child agreements for digital space available on the internet. Print one of those and start using them.
Update it from time to time.
6. Let them know the usage of the report and block option
Do you know almost one in 10 kids inform their parents about cyberbullying? Most times they don’t know what to do while facing this problem. Ask them to tell you whenever they get inappropriate comments, messages, or reactions.
Then teach them how to use features like report and block to deal with this problem. If your child doesn’t feel comfortable sharing, monitor their activities to understand their feelings. In case you see them down without any reason, have conversations.
You have to always keep an open eye. Sometimes kids might end up downloading viruses or malware on the system. It’s best to use anti-virus to refrain this from happening.