The internet can be very resourceful for children, whether they are doing their homework using Wikipedia, playing online games, listening to online music, and more. However, the internet also has some sites that you wouldn’t want your children to visit. Parents are always worried about how to let their kids use the internet but safely. Since it may be a little difficult to keep tabs on what your children are watching or meeting on the internet, here are a few ways you could keep them safe.
Most kids nowadays have internet access. They know almost everything there is to know about applications, music sites, social sites, etc. Technology is their other home. Technology is useful when you want your kids to learn, as they can use a trackpad or touchscreen for navigating some life skills. No matter how old they are, it is essential to know how to protect your child from online predators as they browse social networks such as Facebook, Snapchat, and TikTok.
You can set rules by not allowing your children to use devices such as laptops and phones in their rooms. Instead, it would help if you asked them to use the device in communal areas such as the living room, as they will be discouraged from engaging in inappropriate activities while you are only a glance away. As you set the rules, be sure to know about the dangers of misusing the internet and why you are against them using the devices in their rooms. Also, encourage them to talk to you if they encounter uncomfortable things on the web that upsets them. This way, you will know the inappropriate sites to delete and add them to your parental control filter list.
Using a Virtual Private Network
A Virtual Private Network prevents your location from being tracked and protects your family on the networks. The VPN will connect your devices to a secure server that will use an encrypted connection to keep your data safe while browsing. Virtual Private Networks masks the users’ IP addresses so any person online cannot track the location of your children. The secure connection will also protect your children on risky public networks; therefore, information can never be intercepted. Installing a VPN on your children’s smartphones and computers is essential to keep them protected.
Control the Router
Suppose you would like to control the type of websites and internet services your children can access at home, change your router settings. For example, you can block specific sites, prevent the adult content sites and sometimes schedule the time your young ones spend on the internet to avoid too much screen time.
Know your Kids’ Passwords
If your kids are young, create an account using your name rather than exposing theirs. This way, you will have the password. However, it would be best if you respected the accounts’ age limitations. If you visit a site that requires you to be over 18 years, then you should probably wait if your kid hasn’t reached that age. Whatever you choose, let your children know that you have their passwords and warn them you will see what they post or watch from time to time to ensure everything is okay. It is not advisable to spy on your children’s accounts without letting them know because their trust in you could weaken.
Always check the Browsing History
You must check your kid’s web browser history to see which sites they have been visiting. You can also check the recycle bin as they may have deleted some items. You never know what they are doing and deleting.
Know your Children’s Friends
Many dangerous people online don’t say who they are, and therefore if you are naïve, you could fall into their traps. Such people befriend children and take advantage of them, pretending that they can be trusted. Your children should be cyber wise and learn not to talk or meet strangers from an early age. You can become your child’s friend to see who they are friends with and monitor what they post and what the friends post. Although your kids may not like the idea, let them know you are doing this to protect them.
The internet has made parenting a little more complicated. Since we cannot ignore the fact that your children will use the internet at some point, you must keep them safe always by monitoring their activity online. Although it may be completely impossible to keep them safe totally, the tips we have discussed above will help you to some extent.
Regina Thomas is a Southern California native who spends her time as a freelance writer and loves cooking at home when she can find the time. Regina loves reading, music, hanging with her friends and family along with her Golden Retriever, Sadie. She loves adventure and living every day to the fullest.