The Internet is no longer a safe place for children, where they can spread the beautiful little things in life without hate and harsh comments.
Meanwhile, parents can’t ban their children from using the Internet, but they also can’t let them go uncontrolled in the virtual world and be subsequently traumatized.
Looking after a child in real life is difficult, but how to protect your child from the Internet is even more of a challenge.
That’s why we’ve rounded up the top 5 Internet safety tips (Part 1) to help your children how to be safe online. Part 2 is also available now, don’t forget to check it out!
Top 5 Internet safety tips not every parent knows (Part 1)
Strike a balance between protecting and supervising your child
The line between protecting and invading children’s privacy is very fragile, and to relieve their fears, many parents have to pay a very high price.
Overcontrolling will destroy the relationship between you and your children.
To protect children from the dangers of the Internet, many parents “take a shortcut” by constantly checking their children’s laptops, phones, and iPads, trying to see their children’s messages/calls, monitoring each online activity, etc., meaning they do not respect children’s privacy, and the aftermath does not stop there.
Think about how will your child feel? Surprised, frustrated, and angry, some children even hate their own parents.
One of the most common Internet safety tips is to use software to secretly supervise children on their phones. However, parents need to understand that today’s children are born tech-savvy, so sooner or later, they will discover the tracking apps installed on their devices.
Source: Yan Krukov via Pexels
With just a few keywords searched or through friends, online forums, and groups, children can easily figure out how to bypass these parental controls, for example, setting up other private Facebook and Instagram accounts, and leaving their phones monitored during class recesses, etc.
Besides, parents’ desire for control may not have much to do with keeping their children safe from the dangers of the Internet, but in fact, it has more to do with a desire to quench their thirst for curiosity.
When the Internet safety tips go wrong: Children become more secretive
When children feel they can no longer trust their parents, they will talk less and become more and more secretive.
Source: Kindel Media via Pexels
According to a study on whether parents respect children’s privacy with high school students in the Netherlands, researchers found that after a year, children with strictly controlling parents have more secrets, and parents of these children also know very little about their children’s lives and friends compared to other parents.
Hitting puberty, children tend to make decisions spontaneously and are easily affected by external factors, so this is the time when they need their parents the most. Therefore, when your kids stop sharing, they are most vulnerable to the dangers of the Internet.
Thus, invading privacy is not how to protect your child from Internet!
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Never stop educating children about the dangers of the Internet
No filtering tool can block harmful content with 100% accuracy. When it comes to how to protect your child from Internet, technology isn’t the only way.
Among many Internet safety tips, an open conversation is both a foundation and a catalyst for a close relationship between parents and children.
It’s vital for parents to constantly talk to their kids about the dangers of the Internet, and encourage them to behave responsibly online. Genuine communication is an underrated skill to help children to be self-aware and proactively away from the dangers of the Internet.
It includes sharing and openly talking with children about cybercrimes and dangerous behaviors such as:
What is appropriate and inappropriate content online?
To raise children to become good digital citizens, parents must teach them internet safety rules, which are just as important as those in real life, since children rely heavily on the Internet for learning, entertaining, and making friends:
- Teach kids 10 social media etiquette before posting anything
- Wellness – MUST-KNOW digital skills for children
- How to help kids avoid scams on Facebook? 3 mins knowledge for parents
Make sure you be there when your kids need you
How to keep my child safe? Create a friendly and open conversation environment where your child can share anything with you, without fear of getting scolded or judged, such as seeing a naked picture online, a stranger trying to send them disturbing images, or a friend sending them a suspicious link.
- Don’t ever take anything children say slightly, especially when they express fear, insecurity, or anxiety.
- Encouraging your children to ask questions and express their feelings is one of the most effective Internet safety tips.
- Don’t make up the answer if don’t know it. Instead, admit that your knowledge is limited, and promise to come back with an answer.
At this point, you’re so close to figuring out how to protect your child online. Be patient and discover more internet safety rules with Part 2!
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