As we all know that in this century the internet is the biggest global network in the world that helps people in many ways such as communicating with each other, sharing different sorts of information, and entertainment in different manners. Today, It’s all about how to keep your children safe online. There is no doubt that the internet is the very fastest and accurate tool that uses the Internet Protocol Suite (TCP/IP) to link devices worldwide. It is a network of a group of other networks which consists of private, public, and government networks.
But as we know everything in this world has some sort of advantages but it also consists of disadvantages that can ruin our lives. The Internet is the component that is basically helping us in many fields of life but on the other hand, it is used for crime purposes too. Our young generation especially kids are really getting attracted to the internet. You as a parent must be thinking that your kid is totally safe behind the screen of their tablets or PC’s but as a matter of fact, it is not true.
In this article, we are going to discuss the 9 actionable tips which will keep your kids safe on the internet. So, without wasting further more time let’s get started.
NOTE: Online protection for your children is very difficult to be discussed in only one article. But our main focus will be to highlight all of the information that can help your child safe from any type of harm available over the internet.
Top 9 Tips to Keep your Kids Safe online
Before we jump right over to the explanation I am going to list all these tips. The list is given below:
- Educate your kids about cyber-security and online threats.
- Set usage limits and time on the Internet for your Kids.
- Be patient and listen to your Kids. Let them teach you.
- Use parental control software to monitor your child’s online activities.
- Install an Antivirus on your kid’s devices.
- Keep your child’s software updated.
- Don’t let your kids navigate online without installing any anti-malware solution.
- Secure your Home Wireless Network.
- Do not connect to any unsecured Wi-Fi networks outside your home.
Now we are going to discuss all of these Tips in the form of a brief explanation.
Educate your kids about cyber-security and online threats
So you want your kids to learn new and updated things with the help of the internet or the internet is helping your kids in their education. So the internet is a good tool for your kids, well you are right. But you also have to keep them safe from the disadvantages of the internet. To do that you will have to take some time and talk to your kids in the kid language and educate them about the online threats and how to identify them.
When it comes to the cyber-security, you should talk to your children and educate them about safe browsing on the internet, the malicious site that they shouldn’t access, explain to them about the cyber-bullying, and teach them all the necessary topics that help them differentiate the things going on over the internet.
The more you will speak openly with your kids, the easier it is for them to understand the reality of internet disadvantages. I am going to list some questions that will be useful for you and your kids to understand according to your minds and knowledge. These questions are as follows:
- How much do we know about safe browsing?
- Do we know how to secure an online email account?
- How do we stay safe on Facebook and other social media accounts?
- What safe security blogs should we read to improve our learning?
- How do we stay safe from online scams?
- How do I know my computer is infected?
- How do we maximize our financial data protection?
Discuss these questions with your kids and try to get the opinions of the experts about these questions and also try to solve them on your own.
Set usage limits and time on the Internet for your Kids
The internet is a whole new world for your kids with fascinating things and entertaining elements, but most parents are concerned about the time spent on the internet by their kids. You don’t notice it but your kid is slightly developing an addiction towards the internet and he stays up all night to be on the internet. It is a sign that you should set a usage limit and time limit for your kids to spend time on the internet. You should clearly tell them about the time they should spend on their tablets or computer.
Being a parent you should also clarify what your kids can and can’t do when they navigate the internet.
Be patient and listen to your kids. Let them teach you
Staying online over the internet can be an alarming task and we aren’t able to always predict where our conversation will go or what type of people we may find on social media.
You can check your kid’s computers or their tablets on daily basis, but the most helpful way is to listen to them. We don’t really much know about our children, because there will always be means to get away from our attention.
So, I advise you to be gentle and listen to your kids. Let them teach you and tell you about the social media platforms they use or about the latest video on YouTube.
Just listen to them. Pretend that you don’t know anything about the internet thing and make them start talking. It’s the psychology of kids that kids are more excited to pretend as a teacher.
Have a read through the guides below to secure their social accounts:
- How to Secure your Facebook Account from Hackers.
- How to Protect your Pinterest Account from Hackers and Threats.
- How to Secure your Twitter Account from Hackers.
Use parental control software to monitor your child’s online activities
Due to the increase in the number of devices that are accessed by the kids and are used by them to connect on the internet, it’s really difficult for you to look after them every time when they are online. This problem can be easily solved for you with the help of Parental Control Apps such as FamilyTime, Web Watcher, Net Nanny, and Kaspersky Safe Kids. It is a great way to track your children and control what they are doing on their devices.
Install an Antivirus on your kid’s devices
We all know that kids are naturally curious and attracted to new things, due to which they can easily open malicious links from unknown websites or download malicious video games from unknown websites. Make sure to have the best antivirus solution installed on PCs and smartphones.
For this problem, you will have to install an antivirus or anti-malware software that will keep such malicious files away from your kid’s devices and away from their sight.
Keep your child’s software updated
There is another internet safety tip that every parent should know and follow. First of all, you have to check whether the operating system (OS) on your kids’ devices are updated or not and also make sure that the security patches are available for the system software. The updates of the software include both security and features which are meant to fix the software which is being used in your device.
Cyber-criminals usually gain access to networks and systems by hacking into the security flaws which are found in popular software like Adobe, Browsers, or any other.
That’s the reason that you should keep your child’s device software up-to-date and also make sure that all of the security patches are installed.
If your child ever complains about the slow-down issues, ads pop up on the screen, new software, a different theme or any random error messages, then these are the warning signs that tell you that your device has been attacked by any malware function.
An Antivirus is very old and outdated protection software for and your family against the whole new generation of viruses or malware. To keep your kids safe you must install any sort of anti-malware software which will protect your digital asset for a long time.
Secure your home wireless networks and IoT devices
The home Wi-Fi network is usually used by the members of the home or family, but this doesn’t mean that your Internet Connection is secured from the malicious actors that are anywhere over the internet.
To secure your home wireless network from the eyes of unknown persons, the first thing that you have to do is to set up a very strong and unique combination of text and numbers for your password. Your password should be strong that no one can easily guess it or other people can’t take control over your personal data. You also need to make sure that default login usernames and passwords for IoT devices are changed
Do not connect to any unsecured Wi-Fi networks outside your home
Suppose that you have performed all of the above tips and your kid is safe at home, but there are so many Wi-Fi public networks that they might connect to. This means that it’s possible that your kids are not safe over the local internet connection.
We often go out at public places and connect our devices with the available internet connection and enjoy a cup of coffee without any worry. There might be a hacker on the same internet connection which you are using and might access your data.
So the solution to this problem is pretty simple and that is to keep away from such internet connections.
The Guardian has reported that there has been a high spike in phishing and ransomware scams online. These are criminals and hacking groups targeting innocent people that are online and looking for solutions after this deadly virus outbreak. Thousands of people have been told to quarantine and hackers are taking advantage of COVID-19.
How to stay safe from COVID-19 online scams and phishing:
- Avoid clicking links on emails that you are NOT expecting.
- Do not fill any of your patient and medical data on any online form before checking with a doctor.
- Check the authenticity of the website and if it is actually an official link.
- Do not open links in texts received on your mobile pretending to be your local doctor or hospital.
Are your Kids Safe Online? – Let us know how you keep them safe online
So that’s all the information that we were able to dig out from the internet and books. We hope that this guide was helpful for you and from now on you will be able to keep your kids safe. Share this guide with your friends and family to aware them of the reality of the internet. You can have a look at the internet safety advice for 6-10-year-olds.