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Internet security measures to keep your kids secure online

The internet holds wondrous possibilities for your children if used in the right manner. Like all things, its excess is dangerous and it does have a dark side. Read more below.

Elisa Collins
14th Mar 2018
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The world isn't like what it was ten years ago for the children of today. We used to play with toys at the age of five, but a child that age nowadays needs to be entertained through animated YouTube videos. A teenager no longer finds happiness in video games like he gets by sharing his life on social platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter. While it has its advantages, it's hard to restrict children from having the latest tablets, phones and other devices, but it’s far from safe. Kids can reach unimaginable places on the internet, like communicating with strangers, getting cyber bullied, the dark web, or stumbling across any amount of inappropriate content.

There are a variety of things every parent needs to know if they’re letting their child access the internet. Even if the parent intends to sit with the child, they can’t monitor them forever. Hence, there are some measures that a responsible parent should take before letting the child explore the virtual realm.

Teach Your Child

If your child is going to use something, they should understand the pros and cons of its use. The child may know the times they're allowed on, or the pages they can visit, but other than games and shows, children don’t really know about the internet and the potential harm it can cause. There are lots of ways to teach a child about the internet. You can teach your children about viruses, or let them watch informative videos about the threats on the internet. It is important to create awareness.

Personal Information is a big No No

Your child may be online just to play a game or watch a cartoon but most websites ask for contact or personal information. Teach your child to never fill out forms asking for locations and addresses and to never give out numbers to strangers online. If your teenager has personal information on a public page, make sure that it's hidden and protected. Teach your child to stay private. Inform the children that identities can be stolen and personal information can be misused.

Install Safety Programs on your Devices

Be it mobiles, tablets or laptops, every device needs to be kept updated with the latest software to prevent virtual hackers, malicious software, viruses and Trojans from attacking your computer. Install anti-virus software that not only restricts unnecessary downloads and inappropriate and dangerous websites. It can also track what activity is going on your gadgets. Let the child know that everything is being monitored for a reason.

Use Strong Passwords and Pins

Nowadays it’s touch IDs and facial recognition, but it’s still important to keep strong passwords that cannot be guessed. Teach your child to use passwords that aren't proper words, have special characters and uppercase letters and make sure that your children do not share passwords with their friends. Change passwords regularly. And your security answers should be difficult to guess as well.

Use Parental Controls

These days, most devices come with built-in parental controls that can restrict internet usage, monitor online activity and which websites are visited. Parents can also install applications that can track the child's online activity. Parental controls are a must-have safety technique because the internet is a dangerous place for a child. These days all sorts of software applications are available that can help keep children safe.

Make sure your child is Aware of Cyber-bullying

Cyberbullying can occur in various ways on the internet and parents sometimes aren't aware if their child is being bullied online. In some cases, the child himself becomes the bully. Cyber laws have been passed and children should be educated about the do's and don'ts of voicing their opinions online. Communicate with your child about thier internet activity and keep an eye on your child's social media accounts.

Tell Your Child That Once Done Virtually, It Can't Be Undone.

Teenagers think that the delete option may work wonders but they're wrong. Once uploaded on the internet, the text and images are there to stay. In order to be secure, nothing that the child wouldn't do in person should be online.

Become your Child's Social Platform Friend

Let your child know that if there's something he or she wishes to see that might upset the parent, then it shouldn't belong on the internet. Become your child's social media friend. If it's time for him to have an online identity, give him one but make sure that you're in on whatever happens on that account.

Tell Your Children to Follow Real Life Rules

In real life, your child will ask permission before doing something important and will ask you if he doesn't know the impact of his actions. In the online world, he should follow the same approach. If he isn't sure of something or someone, he should ask rather than making a decision. Just like real life, online decisions are permanent.

Let the Child know the good side of the Internet

Talk to your children about the positive aspects of the internet and how they can use it to their benefit. Sign them up for online classes, let them visit safe game websites, watch tutorials about things they love to do, video chat with their grandparents, research an assignment or Google difficult answers to a project.

The internet holds wondrous possibilities for your children if used in the right manner. Like all things, its excess is dangerous and it does have a dark side. That does not mean that the internet should be off-limits for your children. However, good parenting entails that security measures are used for your child's time in the virtual world. Safety and security are the most important factors when you’re online, especially when your family members also use the internet. Frontier is a company that provides full-time protection which includes a complete security suite to keep your family safe from online threats. Frontier Internet Service is fast and reliable and you’ll get the peace of mind knowing that your kids are safe from all the dangers that can harm your computer. Frontier’s high-speed internet service comes with no connectivity issues at all. This means that you can connect multiple devices to the internet and the speed of the internet will not be affected by the number of connected devices. 

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