Sometimes, we wish that we could keep our kids safe from the dangers of the internet by simply keeping them offline. But in this digital world, that is simply no longer possible. Kids are going to be exposed to the internet no matter what: they’ll be taught lessons online at school and they will go online at their friends’ homes. So it is important that your child knows how to use the internet safely.
Recognize Your Kids Will Be Exposed To The Internet
Instead of trying to hide the internet from your child, you must make sure that they are comfortable using it and know the dangers. Children have little experience with the web and don’t instinctively know to avoid phishing schemes, malware, or other problems. Here’s how you can get started on keeping your child safe on the internet.
Do Your Kids Know How To Use The Internet Safely?
Your children need to be taught safe internet use. They aren’t going to figure it out without guidance. You should let your child know early on which websites are safe and acceptable and which types of sites are not. Your child should know not to give out personal information online, such as addresses and bank account information. Your child should know to avoid talking to strangers, especially in chat rooms. And your child should know that if they feel uncomfortable, to reach out to an adult.
Stay Aware Of New Internet Threats
There are new internet threats popping up all the time. There are sites that hide malicious viruses. There are fake websites and phishing emails that try to obtain the personal information of individuals to steal their identities. There are predators who will try to befriend a child online and then lure them offline to meet. You should be aware of all of these potential threats and know how to counteract them as well.
Parents Should Establish Rules Early On
Parents need to establish rules from the beginning so that their children understand safe internet use. One of the newer tools helping parents keep their children safe is VPNs. VPNs provide a secure, encrypted connection, and keep children’s online history safe from third parties, hackers, or ISPs. VPNs like Hotspot Shield provide a secure connection without sacrificing a fast web surfing experience. Parents might want to set rules on VPN use, setting passwords, and creating social media accounts.