Unsupervised surfing – letting your child loose online – could end in tears! Life is busy, the demands are challenging and juggling home and work responsibilities can be tricky. No one is judging you! If a screen buys you 20 minutes to get things done, we understand.
However, we must ask ourselves the following before we hand over that phone or tablet. Teach them about online dangers: educate your kids about potential online dangers such as cyber-bullying, stranger danger, and the dangers of sharing personal information. Is your child prepared and have you secured your devices from predators, scammers, and bullies? Remember to do the following:
1. Adjust your privacy settings
Ensure that your browser settings are up to date with regards to privacy. Don’t allow any personal information to be shared unless you have specifically said so. Emphasize the importance of privacy: teach your kids to protect their personal information online and to be cautious about the information they share.
2. Invest in an anti-virus system
Things cost money, but securing your personal data and files is just as important as health insurance. It’s up to you, but we highly recommend a paid solution to sweep your devices on a regular basis. Use parental controls: consider using parental controls to block inappropriate content and to limit the amount of personal information that is shared.
3. Encourage responsible decision-making
Teach your kids to think critically about the websites, apps, and social media accounts they use, and to make responsible decisions when it comes to their online activity.
4. Update your passwords
There is a lot to remember every day, but updating your password is an effective way of keeping your data safe.
5. Stay involved
Even when your kids are unsupervised, make sure that you stay involved in their online experiences. Ask them about what they are doing online and keep an eye on their devices and accounts.
By following these steps, you can help your kids stay safe and make responsible decisions while they are unsupervised online.