Internet Safety for Kids
These are the points which were discussed during the Tech Talk Night for Parents in SIS Cilegon regarding – Internet Safety for Kids
1. Be online
Be online, rather than offline The idea is simple: if being online is so fraught with danger, why not just stay offline? But that’s not the answer because in today’s technology-rich society, being familiar – and capable – with technology is a big plus and a potential differentiator between your children and someone they’re up against for a place in school or college or even the workplace. The “social media can be used to their advantage. Employers can be VERY impressed by all that innovative, creative, stuff they’ve done online – the cool images, that website they built, those mobile apps they developed, those insights they posted to their blog, the personal and business networks they’ve built and maintain etc. The bottom line is: Be online but be responsible about it.
2. Be Safe
Here are some tips on how to be safe online
a. Spare your credit cards- Disable in-app purchases so your kids cannot buy anything online
b. Stick to age appropriate content- Enable Safe Search Features in applications, but do not let technology do all the work. Do not forget to supervise your children while they are on the web.
c. Use privacy tools- There is no overlap between things which are posted to the Internet and things which are private. They are mutually exclusive, so in the most simple terms: there is no privacy on the Internet, but make applications provide privacy settings and we do of course recommend they be used. It is after all better to use them and retain a limited amount of control over who sees what you post rather than simply leave everything wide open by default.
d. Limit location services. Location services is the ability for your location to be determined
based on your phone’s location services such as GPS and wi-fi.
Disabling these services is really a personal choice. For example one woman at a previous session had installed an app on her child’s phone to allow him to be tracked as he had an illness for which he had to regularly take medicine and she wanted to know where he was at all times.
That said, its really important that kids understand the power of GPS location and how it works. We want our children to be savvy online. Review your restrictions: yes you need GPS location services for google maps… But there’s plently you don’t need it for.
e. Manage your passwords- your passwords must be complex and must be changed frequently so it cannot be cracked.
f. Don’t click on everything-A simple piece of advice we should all heed is “don’t click on everything online”, especially ads like the one shown which boasts a “free iPad”. Rest assured clicking on that ad will not result in a free iPad but, more likely, an attempt to install malware on your device.
So parents should tell their kids this: don’t click on everything you see online and if you’re ever unsure about something, come to me and ask before doing anything. Train them from a young age, so that when they do come across something inappropriate or that makes them feel uncomfortable, that they will come and talk to you.
3. Be Kind
We want to encourage self-compassion and compassion for others online. You never know what others are going through so always err on the side of kindness online…
Some simple advice for your kids:
A. Don’t respond when others are unkind
B. Don’t be a by-stander when someone is being bullied online.
C. Block the bully
D. Save the evidence
E. Report it (to a parent, teacher or other adult)
4. Be Smart
The progression of internet activities should be encouraged and managed by parents rather than just throwing kids in the deep end. Make sure your PCs and devices are not used in the bedrooms, which will make parental control hard. Open two-way communication is key especially as your child gets older. It supersedes parental controls which are only valuable to help train young kids. As kids grow up, your role becomes more advisory and you simply need to encourage this idea of responsibility online. In fact, when you continuously repeat yourself to your child, you are training your kids to ignore you.
Everyone has choices to make online and offline, the key is ‘being responsible’ for that critical thinking moment. Talk to your kids about this. Critical thinking – online. When we choose to act or behave in a specific way. The consequences of which can be positive or negative. Every behaviour has a consequence.