How to protect children from the dangers of the Internet
On May 17 is celebrated worldwide the International Internet Day, or World Day of the Information Society, a party designed to remember the many possibilities of new information and communication technologies. And is that the Internet has more pros than cons, but it is necessary control the dangers that pose for the smallest of the house.
With this thought, there are many tips that are given to protect children from the dangers of the Internet. Harassment through social networks, grooming ... are increasingly common and we must teach our children since they are small to protect themselves from the dangers, although they are a 'digital natives' and parents have to learn .
Protection for children under 5 years of age
- Limits: Yes, they are very small, but it is good that they know the limits and adapt to them. For example, in the maximum time of Internet use.
- Security: put passwords to mobile devices such as tablets to, in case of losing them, make it difficult for a stranger to access, for example, photos of your child.
- Parental control: In those devices that your little one accesses, he establishes a parental control system adapted to his age that allows him to access only the appropriate content. For this, it is necessary to keep the protection software that you download updated.
- Downloads: Be careful what you download because sometimes you can have viruses or unwanted ads or that your child can see. Check the old qualifiers and comments before downloading games or applications for the little ones in the house.
Internet security in children between 6 and 9 years old
- Security: keep the security devices, but keep in mind that is adapted to the age of your child (it is not the same protection of a child of three years than of another child of eight, for example).
- Agreement: Talk to your children about the pages they can visit and explain to them what kind of personal information they can not reveal on the Internet (such as the name of their school, where they live or their agenda of activities). It is also good to talk with older siblings so they do not show inappropriate things to the little ones in the house.
- Weather: here you have to be more strict and maintain a specific time limit for both the Internet and the consoles.
- Downloads: It also teaches your child what he can and should not download and make sure that he complies with the advice you have given him about it: that he does not access content that is not suitable for him and that he only downloads useful and non-dangerous applications.
- Be strong: If you do not think your child is old enough to see certain content, stay firm. It is better to talk with him and make him understand that simply prohibit it, but it is also important to keep the same idea.
Protection with children between 10 and 12 years old
- Go ahead: Once children grow up, it seems harder to protect them from the dangers of the internet. The experts of 'Get Safe Online', a British portal designed to protect big and old from the risks of the Internet, recommend at this age to 'get ahead': before buying a device of your own, it makes clear what the limits will be of use and that you will always have the last word.
- Communication: As always, the key is in communication. Talk with your child and let him see what can be shared and what can not be shared. Talk about the information, about the photos and videos and also about the comments they leave: everything is public on the Internet and leaves a mark, the so-called 'fingerprint'.
- Photos: It is very important to educate our children so that they do not send pictures of them with little clothes to other people, whoever they are and have all the confidence in them. Again: everything is public on the Internet, although they believe that only their friends receive it through applications such as WhatsApp.
- Social networks: Social networks like Facebook have the age limit in 13 years, and that's for something. Do not let your child lie about his age to get an account, everything will come in due time.
- Courage: Anonymity is not protection on the internet. Explain that well to your child, and inculcate the responsibility of never doing something online that you would not do or say to your face
Protect a teenager from the dangers of the internet
Once children grow up and reach adolescence, control is much more complicated, now the strategy must be different: communication and trust. Speak to your children about the dangers, make them see that, even if they "know everything", you also have knowledge, and trust that they will do the right thing but do not stop be "vigilant"
Young people are exposed to inadequate contents, to behaviors that are not what they should be, and they are also the object of publicity addressed to them. All this represents risks that they must know to not regret. Although each social network has its "own language", as it happens with Instagram, and every day new ones appear, the way of behaving in them must always be the same: with great responsibility.
That they never say or do anything they would not do in person, that never publish something that you later regret, that they do not comment on how their personal life is (their schedules, directions, etc.) are the basic steps.
Angela R. Bonachera