What you should know…
As your child is getting older they are spending more time than usual on computers. You may be more concerned about child internet safety overall as well as their Internet contacts and activities.
Children connect to the Internet at home and at school more and more these days. The Internet is an inexhaustible resource and a valuable educational tool, however, it is important to sensitize children to its potential dangers. Young navigators are unaware that individuals with bad intentions can hide behind the anonymity of the world wide web. To ensure that you children’s experience on-line is a rewarding and satisfying one, the following rules are recommended:
Precautions You can take:
Discuss the various dangers of the Internet with your child.
Place the computer in a common room that is accessible to all family members. Establish specific Internet surfing rules — the time of day, duration and approved Web sites. Discuss these rules and post them near the computer for them to be constantly reminded.
Allow your child to surf the Internet only when you are at home and supervise their Web activities. Try to find out who their cyber friends and contacts are. Make sure that they always use a name that doesn’t reveal their true identity.
Configure your computer in such a way as to restrict your child’s access to certain sites.
Encourage your child to report any information, conversation or incident that makes them uncomfortable.
Don’t hesitate to contact the police if they receive pornographic material, explicit images, or are solicited for sex.
If you allow your child to have a Website on the Internet, they should only include information that you would deem appropriate to post in public places.
What your child should know about internet safety?
They must never divulge personal information on the Internet such as thier name, address, password, telephone number, the name of their school, their photo, etc.
They should never respond to threats or obscene messages, and to let you know the minute they receive one so you can take care of it properly.
They should never plan a face-to-face meeting with a cyber friend without your permission and they should provide you with all the details necessary.
What to watch for?
Ask yourself the following questions when your children are surfing the Internet:
1. Do they spend an excessive amount of time on the Internet?
2. Do your children receive telephone calls, mail, gifts or packages from people you don’t know?
3. When you approach, does your child quickly shut off the computer or change the image appearing on the screen, or otherwise act secretly?
4. Do you find pornographic or questionable material on the computer? Check the history of the websites visited in your Internet browser to see if any inappropriate websites have been viewed.
What should you do if you are suspicious about your child’s activities on-line?
It’s quite important that you talk with your child periodically, about the dangers of sex offenders especially on the internet. Use your Caller ID to determine who is calling your child at home. Do not hesitate to call the authorities if your child has received child pornography by email, has been sexually solicited by someone who knows that your child is under 18 years of age in a chatroom or by instanst messenger or has received explicit images from someone that knows your child is under 18 years of age.
Your child will have the world at their fingertips. Safety rules are recommended when your child is on the Internet. Sexual predators wait for an opportune time to act!