Tips to Help Protect Your Kids Online
Do you have young children or grandchildren running around your house from time to time? Young teens? The majority of young children and teens today have a smartphone or a tablet, and they take it with them everywhere they go. Keeping an eye over their shoulder day and night isn’t feasible, but there are ways you can shield them from darker side of the internet when you aren’t around.
Don’t Shield Your Children from Technology Altogether
Children growing up today have a decisive advantage of being exposed to the wealth of information, knowledge and resources the internet has to offer. Their future professors and job markets will expect this generation to have expert level mastery of technology, so don’t hold them back from everything the ‘Age of Information’ or ‘Digital Age’ has to offer. Imagine growing up in the Library of Congress, and then multiply that by a few hundred thousand or million. Nearly anything a child might want to learn about is right there in the palm of their hand.
Protect Children from the Unsavory Side of the Internet
However many wonderful things the internet has to offer, it’s your job to make sure children don’t get exposed to the darker side of the internet.
Here are a few tips for protecting children and young teens.
- Teach Your Children: The first defense is to teach your children about the proper use of the internet. There’s no way to guarantee that a child will go through their entire life without stumbling into some scenario where parental controls haven’t been set on a device. As a parent, one of the best things you can do is teach your children that it is their responsibility to only go to websites, watch YouTube Channels or play games that you have approved. If they want to play or see something new, make sure they know to ask your permission.
- Device Protection: Most devices come with various parental controls. Apple’s Parental Control Setting probably applies to many of the devices in your home, but even Microsoft Windows has special parental controls that can protect an entire computer. Some devices also let you set limitations on the number of hours a child can use a device. Let’s not forget the value of playing outside!
- Browser Controls: Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, YouTube and most other internet browsers have various parental settings that allow you to block inappropriate content at the browsing or search level. There is even a browser designed specifically for kids called Safe Search Kids. Various companies have also come out with parental control software that help ensure kids don’t land on inappropriate content.
- Do A Bit of Investigating: You can configure most browsers to require a password when deleting browsing history. From time to time, it might be worth checking out your child’s browsing history to make sure they aren’t violating your rules. The internet has some terrible stuff, but with a bit of effort, you can help protect your children from inappropriate content.
Inappropriate Content Isn’t the Only Reason for Parental Controls
It’s also important to prevent children’s access to purchase items or apps without your permission. Having the right protections and parental controls in place will make sure those accidents don’t happen. There have even been instances of children buying a car by pushing buttons on a smartphone:
What Age Do I Remove Parental Controls from Devices?
As children reach adulthood, it is important for parents to make a judgment call as to when a child is ready to have their restrictions lifted. Legally children enter into adulthood at 18, but we find that most parents still call the shots as long as they’re still living under their roof.
Contact us if you’d like to learn more about or need help setting parental controls on your home’s wireless network or individual devices.
Moseley Electronics specializes in custom electronic solutions, including wireless networking, home automation, lighting controls, and home theaters. We serve the metro Richmond area, including Midlothian, Chesterfield, and the West End, as well as the Outer Banks and Hatteras area.