Internet Safety Tips for Kids
It’s hard to believe we’re more than halfway through summer break!
With the school year fast approaching, your child may need to use the Internet for homework or research. And like any other activity your child does, you cannot be watching every second. That’s why it’s vital that children understand some basic safety rules, instead of just specific things they can or cannot do.
Before letting them go online, talk to your child about these concepts:
Remind your child to question all information. Emphasize that people can lie about their names, ages and genders online.
Tell them to never give out personal info. Show them a simple Google search of yourself to prove how easy it is to gather information on just a name.
Place the computer in an open, visible area. Don’t hover or spy, but do let your child know that you can see what they’re doing.
Ask broad, non-invasive questions about what sites your children are on and what they like to do online. Keep an open dialogue - you don’t want your child to try and hide what they’re doing.
Make sure kids know to never give out passwords to anyone - not even to friends.
Remind your kids that everything online is permanent. This is especially important for older children that are starting to use social media networks. Screenshots, caches and other tools mean that even deleting a post or comment won’t make it go away. Tell them to pause and think through every post.
Finally, make sure that they know to come to you if anything online should upset or bother them. Once you establish trust and some ground rules, you can rest knowing your child can surf online safely.