Kids of all ages enjoy using technology. We see children surfing the internet to play games, talk to their family, watch videos, and even learn to use voice-assisted technology like Alexa and Siri to learn about the world.
Below you will find 8 tips that you can apply at home, to keep your children safe online.
1. Set boundaries
In the same way that you set boundaries for most areas of your child's life, set your expectations for the use of technology as well as its online activities. Creating a family agreement is a useful step, which can include time spent on the internet, where and when devices can be used, and what to do if they see something annoying.
2. Understanding the internet
The best way to keep your family safe online and to understand your child's use of the Internet is to use technology and the Internet together. Learn how a game or device works by exploring it as a family and find out where the key settings and security features are.
3. Supervise your child
We recommend that you always supervise a child while surfing the internet, as they may see something that might upset, upset or confuse them. Since Internet access from many devices and many of them are portable, we advise you to keep family and children's devices in a busy part of your home, e.g. in the living room or kitchen. This makes it easy for you to be there to answer any questions and help them.
4. Examine the quality of what he sees
Young children may be avid tech enthusiasts, but they try to encourage a healthy combination of online and offline activities. There are a number of strategies that can be used to help manage the time your child spends online, such as setting time limits or using time-limiting tools, setting weekly hours to use the Internet together, or removing portable devices from the Internet. your child's bedroom at night to avoid fatigue.
5. Use parental control tools
Use parental controls and filters that can be used over the Internet on devices, phone networks, and online services such as Netflix and YouTube.
Parental controls work best in conjunction with supervision and commitment to help your child understand how to stay safe online. As your child grows and develops, you may want to check your parental controls periodically.
Always remember to choose a strong password and do not share it with your child.
6. Talk to your child early
It is important to start discussing online safety as soon as possible in order to create a positive attitude early in a child's life. The age at which you should start talking to your child will vary between families, but essentially as they get started with technology and the Internet these conversations can and should start.
You can also give your child early strategies that they can use if something worries or upsets them online. These may include: turning off the screen, shutting down the laptop, exiting the site and asking for help.
7. Check apps and games by age
Play can be the first way your child encounters life online and there are many fantastic online games and applications that support learning and development. When choosing a new toy or app for your child, the first thing you need to know is the age rating. Like movies, games also have an age rating and these are determined by the content of the game. The PEGI ( pegi.info ) defines these ratings along with a description of the content that indicates whether a toy contains things like violence, buying illegal goods or sexually explicit scenes. The Google Play and Windows Store applications are also rated by PEGI and the App Store.
Many games also offer in-app purchases, which means you spend real money on in-game features. You can disable in-app purchases and lock them with a password. To find out more about how to do this, visit www.childnet.com/in-app-purchases .
8. Report malicious activity
Reports can be made on websites through the safety / assistance centers and surveillance services. If you are concerned about someone communicating with your child online, refer them to cybercrime prosecution. The discussion about online safety can start as soon as your child is involved in technology.