There is no doubt today that children have the ability to use electronic devices and the internet, even the smallest kids already know how to play their favorite online games. This opens a debate among parents about what age should kids start using technology and how much time they should spend on it. Although there is no precise answer to these questions, here, parents can learn some tips about Cybersecurity for children.
According to a research by Norton, 87% of Spanish parents consider it risky to allow their children to use computers and mobile devices without any supervision; in fact, among the 3 biggest concerns are: children can suffer cyber bullying (92%), spend too much time in front of the screen (88%) and download malicious programs or applications (88%).
Despite the active awareness of these latent dangers, statistics say that most parents are not adjusting their parenting. The study found that 68% do not limit access to certain websites or applications, 19% allows their children to buy online without surveillance and 57% allows them to use the internet without supervision.
Children on the Internet have a lack of supervision due to many reasons, one being parents not intervening to check the safety of their children.
Therefore, we invite you to read the following basic cybersecurity tips, which you can apply to control and protect your children about the dangers they are exposed to on the web.
Cybersecurity for children: tips for parents and children
- Limits how long your children can spend connected to the web, set those limits and make sure they are met.
- Watch the pages they visit, who they communicate with and what other actions they do on the web. And if you detect any access to some undesirable content for their age, you can talk with them about the subject and block access to the web or game.
- Recommend your kids to not use their real name on the web and never give personal information, such as phone numbers, your address, their school, or where they will go on vacation, etc. to strangers.
- Establish a VPN connection in your home to ensure that no online predator will have access into your system.
- Teach children to create unique passwords that they can remember or keep in safe places.
- It is important for children to understand that the digital world can be as dangerous as the real world. If they are usually taught not to talk to strangers, the same should apply on the web.
- Watch who they contact on the web and teach them never to meet a stranger in person they met online.
- They should never respond to any threatening messages. Let them know if this happens, they have to discuss it with you or the adult that is in charge.
- Try to place the computer in a common area, where you can monitor what they do. This can be challenging by the usage mobile phones or tablets, yet still possible, you have the ability to monitor it other ways.
- Bookmark their favorite sites to facilitate access.
- Pay attention to any changes or attitudes regarding the time they spend on the web: Do they receive phone calls from people you do not know? Have you noticed any unsolicited gifts that have arrived in the mail? do they not like to talk about their online activities? Although these questions may seem unimportant, they could be signs that your children are being cyber bullied by a criminal.
Cybersecurity for children in Social networks:
12. Show them how to recognize and block unwanted contacts.
13. Specify that they must only add contacts from people they already know.
14. Monitor their social networks, check who their friends are and what they publish.
How to use parental control
15. Disable online purchases, or set parental controls on their devices to control they use it.
16. Use applications to monitor what your children do online: what do they download? How much time do they spend connected?
17. You can also configure parental control in browsers to be sure which pages they can enter.
Technology is changing our way of life, therefore, encouraging parents to monitor their children online will allow the child to grow up understanding how to navigate the online world in a safe way. The web can be as dangerous as the real world, however they don’t need to stop enjoying it. The important thing is that parents start to implement this change in their daily lives. Cybersecurity for children is important and if done properly can be hassle free.