The fact of the matter is, as kids age, they will be using the internet. They will be going to Google or Bing and will do some searching. They will also be joining Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. They will be watching videos on YouTube. When most parents hear this fact, it freaks them out. And I have to say they have a very valid reason to be concerned when it comes to kids using the internet. The potential of learning something dangerous is very high. They can also connect with those who you don’t want anywhere near your children on social media. My advice however is to not disallow them from using the internet. If you do that, your kids will resent you! They will definitely sneak a way to use the internet behind your back! That would definitely not be a good thing! The good news is, there is a solution.
You must allow your children to use the internet, and to join social networks. They are going to be naturally curious about it, so let them satisfy their curiosity. However, limitations definitely need to be placed when it comes to your kids going online. They will not like it, however they need to fully understand that it’s not such a nice world out there. There are dangerous people lurking. At the very least if they go online unprotected, they could become victims to cyberbullying. Stress to your kids that these limitations you are placing on them when it comes to going online is for their own safety! Not to mention, even if your kids are good kids which I am sure is the case… they can still be influenced by something negative they could come across online.
Some really good protection software or platforms to get for internet safety is Net Nanny as well as K9 Web Protection. This amazing software can filter out pornography, gambling, suicide, death, gore, weapons, tobacco, profanity, and anything else that you would not want your kids near. An example of what Net Nanny can do is if a child searches for the word “breast”, it will immediately block searches that are sexual in nature, and will only allow safe sites that are relevant to “chicken breast” come up.
This type of protection software comes with a social media safety feature as well. It will provide a cloud-based dashboard which will allow parents to see what networks your kids are on, as well as what they and their friends are up to! This way, you will have the piece of mind knowing that you can get involved if there are any kinds of concerns in regards to privacy, cyberbullying, predators, reputation pictures or videos and more. If a problem arises, you can stop it from getting out of control.
The great thing about these platforms is that they do not slow your connection down either. As a parent, with these options out there to help protect your kids online- you can let out a sigh of relief. However, be sure to learn everything you can about how these platforms operate so you can keep your child as safe as possible online!