The Internet can be an environment for children to learn and play, but on the other hand, it is a completely dark and dangerous world full of dangers and attackers targeting your children. Unfortunately, children and adolescents are particularly vulnerable.
From online predators to the disclosure of sensitive information on social media, Internet threats can have serious, costly, and even life-long consequences. Protecting children on the Internet is a matter of deep and clear awareness — knowing what dangers are lying around and how to protect them.
While network security software can be an Internet safety for kids, help protect against many cyber security threats, the most important safety measure is open communication with your child. The article below will help you understand 8 cyber threats of the Internet, their negative impact on your children.
TOP 8 cyber threats that harm your child
Cyberbullying (online bullying) is bullying that occurs on digital devices such as cell phones, computers and tablets. Online bullying can happen through SMS, text messages and social networks. It includes sending, posting, or sharing fake, negative, or malicious content about others. It may consist of sharing personal or private information about someone else, causing shame or humiliation.
There are 90% of teens agree that cyberbullying is a problem and 63% believe it is a serious problem. Furthermore, a 2018 survey of children’s online behavior found that about 60% of children using social media witnessed bullying and most children completely ignored it.
You may probably know Hana Kimura, a Japanese professional wrestler, has died at the age of 22. She had been cyber-bullied. This somehow proves that the more the Internet develops, the more serious cyberbully becomes.
The best foundation for protection against cyberbullying is to be comfortable talking with your kids about what’s going on in their lives online and in real life. Start by talking with your child. You can initiate a conversation by telling a story that you were bullied as a child or about an example of cyberbullying that you heard on the news.
If your child doesn’t want to mention it, calmly tell him that you will take control of his or her computer and phone temporarily. You can know what your kids do online and what they have deleted. Once you are sure your child is being bullied, you can do things to stop it.
Highly access to pornographic content
Research shows that most pornography and sex addiction begin in adolescence. Pornography negatively affects brain development, badly changes the view of self-image and encourages attitudes and acts of violence against women.
Your child is still human, and therefore he/she has certain privacy rights. Instead of suddenly snatching your child’s phone and reading everything on it, forbid your child from using the computer when no adult is around or constantly staring at their screen, etc. those sound effective but extremely counterproductive.
You will gradually give your child a feeling of being watched, they will become closed and afraid to share with their parents (for fear of being scolded) or start telling lies to gain the access to the computer.
Instead, install content filtering tools that use the most advanced technology such as CyberPurify’s AI, which protects your child not only from pornography but also other malicious content that affects their physical and mental development like weapons, gore, accidents, etc. It will let your kids learn and explore the Internet freely but still securely.
An online predator is when an adult uses the Internet to take advantage of a child and/or young person for sexual or financial abuse. Sexual predators and other predators often stalk children on the Internet, taking advantage of their innocence, lack of adult supervision and abuse of their trust.
These predators lurk on social media: chat rooms, instant messaging, game platforms that appeal to children – virtual locations where anonymity facilitates “hunting.”
Some common forms of cyber-predation are the online predator sending illegal images, audio or video to children under an approved age. Or the predator entices the minor to engage in pornographic conversations. Or arrange to meet with a minor to commit sexual acts that are illegal, unlawful and unethical.
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Disclosure of personal information
Children don’t understand the boundaries of what should post and what should not post. Your child can disclose post personally identifiable information (PII) online, such as home address, phone number, credit card number, family name publicly on their social media profiles.
It can also be any selfie, a family photo or a photo tagged by a friend, etc. Oversharing on social media makes private information more vulnerable to be disclosed.
In addition to regularly watching what your child is posting, talk frankly with your child about what to post and what not to post, helping them understand what information should be confidential and why. Personal information about your family such as a home address, bank accounts, etc. should be kept confidential.
These are the traces of the things your child leaves behind when they go online. The Internet doesn’t have a “Delete” button. What happens online will last forever on the Internet. Everything you post is public whether you delete the post or not, once you have commented, posted anything, it will be forever on the Internet and be traceable.
Explain to your teen that their conception, style and outlook will change as they get older but internet posts are forever.
Even if the image, video or text is only for one person, once it is submitted or posted, it is out of their control. It is visible to billions of people out there and most likely cannot be removed from the Internet even if your child thinks it has been deleted.
Even if your child deletes personal page name information, the old information can still be saved on someone else’s device (through screen capture, for example) and can be spread over the network later.
The FBI provides guidance against predators and other online risks to Internet safety for kids. However, one of the best and best practices is to keep talking with your children about what’s going on in their daily lives, including the potential Internet threats.
Phishing is what cybersecurity experts call an attacker masquerading as a reputable unit to trick users into giving them personal information by using emails trying to deceive people to click on malicious links or attachments. From there, they will steal their account information & login passwords, transaction passwords, credit cards and other valuable information.
These can be especially hard to spot for children because often the email will appear to be from a legitimate person, such as a friend or family member. However, phishing can also be performed using messaging apps or text messages.
So teach your kids to avoid clicking emails or texts from strangers and be wary of messages that appear to be from their friends but don’t have any genuine personal messages attached, or you can tell them to that if you are in doubt, you can ask at any time.
If adults can be fooled by receiving millions of dollars or a supercar, kids can fall into more subtle scams when the attacker gives them what they value high such as 1-year free gameplay or special game features.
Your child is especially susceptible to being deceived because they have not learned to be vigilant and also because they have not experienced much with the outside life. Like online scams, criminals can use children’s popular websites to identify potential victims, then lure them into giving out their parents’ credit card information in exchange for what they want.
Tell your child that no one gives him anything for free, if what he or she sounds too good, too great it may not be true.
Malware is the common name for several variants of malware, including viruses, ransomware, and spyware. Malware often includes code designed by network attackers to cause massive damage to data and systems or to gain unauthorized access to a network.
The cyber attacker will install malicious software that the victim does not know about on their computer. Cybercriminals often trick users into downloading malware, such as convincing victims to download malware that disguises itself as a game – which can completely appeal to children.
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