Ходжа Н. (hojja_nusreddin) wrote,
Ходжа Н.

Tools for Keeping Kids Safe Online

Everyone has heard the horror stories about children online
- teens, who are cyberbullied so badly, they become suicidal
- others, who don’t realize, that the pictures they send out are broadcast to the entire world
- But how can parents protect their children, while still allowing them to explore the beneficial parts of the Internet?

For general health & brain development reasons, many experts call for limiting screen time

- but even, if you do, there are still a couple of hours of the day, when your child will be plopped in front of a computer
- Technically there’s a federal law, the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act,
- designed to help keep kids safe.
- Enforcement of that law can be a bit tricky, however, particularly with sites not based in the US

The safest option, of course, would be to sit over your kids’ shoulder

- & watch everything they do
- but that takes your time &
- doesn’t give the kids the freedom to:
--- explore on their own, learn & have some measure of privacy
- still, there are ways to watch what they are doing, or
- at least shield them from some of the darker corners of the Web.

1. Ground rules

Before they even see the keyboard, the most important step is:
- to talk with your children about the Internet
You don’t want to scare them (or maybe you do), but it’s important:
- to let them know the basics, that adults know already (or should)

A. Never give out your full name, phone number & address
B. Never agree to meet in person someone, you meet online, unless it is:
- with your parents permission &
- supervised
C. Understand that once you post something:
- it’s out of your control &
- it only takes a second for someone else:
--- to take a screenshot &
--- to pass it further along

2. Internet sources of kids' safety information

Safekids.com offers
- detailed news and approaches to online safety for kids of various ages
- It provides contracts for online safety
- documents for parents and kids to sign that lay out agreed upon online conduct

The National Cyber Security Alliance

- https://www.staysafeonline.org/teach-online-safety
- is another good resource for safety tips for different age groups

The US Federal Government has gotten in on the act
- https://kids.usa.gov/online-safety/index.shtml
- with recommendations for kids, parents and teachers.

Microsoft rolls safety and technology education into a great site called "YouthSpark"

- http://www.microsoft.com/about/corporatecitizenship/en-us/youthspark/youthsparkhub/programs/onlinesafety
- It lays out advantages and potential problems of being online & on social media sites
- offers some food for thought about how to avoid the pitfalls
- It also provides instruction in coding and other technology skills.

3. Safe search

Google, Bing, Yahoo
and pretty much all of the other search engines:
- offer safe search features, which help filter search results
- In some cases, the questionable material won’t show up
- in others it will be pixelated, or block the searches.

Google has a site called Safe Search Kids

- http://www.safesearchkids.com
- which has the filters on - all the time
- That site also has instructions about how to turn on the Google filters
- because it won’t take kids long before they just go to the main page

Bing, under its settings page

- also offers a similar option
- http://www.bewebsmart.com/safe-search/filter-out-adult-content-in-bing
- just be sure your children have their own computer login
- so you don’t filter your own results as well

Sometimes, these filters can be a bit overzealous

- in what they filter out,
- so be prepared for the kids to occasionally ask you to unblock it for a perfectly legitimate website.

4. Parental control software

Eventually, kids may

- stumble on things that put them at risk, or
- figure out the names of the websites &
- then circumvent the filters on the search engines

That’s where other monitoring programs can come in

- to block such things as:
--- pornography and gambling sites
- Typically they can also be tailored by parents
- to better fit their child’s maturity level & their family’s values.

Net Nanny
- http://www.netnanny.com
- about $30, is one of the better known options

AVG Family Safety
- https://familysafety.avg.com
- about $60

McAfee Family Protection
- http://home.mcafee.com/store/family-protection
- about $50, also well-respected

The new player, Qustodio
- https://www.qustodio.com/en
- is billing itself as the “Internet’s best free parental control app”

These programs are all evolving with the times
- Many of them have ways to monitor your child’s social networking presence &
- will send you alerts – some will send you a text message
- when they flag something, your child posted or something they might see as inappropriate

5. Kid-friendly sites

There’s a wealth of age-appropriate sites for kids out there &
as with seemingly everything in technology, new sites pop up every day & go away just as quickly


- http://www.kidzworld.com
- is a site entirely dedicated to children
- It has news, information and a social networking component
- all filtered and moderated


- http://www.clubpenguin.com
- is owned and operated by Disney,
- a brand name, that probably tells you all you need to know

Common Sense Media

- https://www.commonsensemedia.org/website-lists
- makes a business of rating and reviewing web sites for kids
- so you don’t have to keep up with the rapidly changing landscape on your own.

There’s no perfect way to ensure that kids, who are online, never see anything inappropriate

- ut by using a combination of vigilance, content blockers and interesting kids content,
- you can tip the balance in favor of a healthy and safe experience

Tags: дитя, защита, интернет, приватность, совет

Posts from This Journal “приватность” Tag

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