If you’re a parent this Christmas chances are your children have asked Santa for some type of technology, whether it be an iPad, a new phone or other online device. Maybe your house is full of these items already. One thing is for sure, it’s getting easier and easier for kids (and adults) to get into serious trouble online. Bright Insurance has come up with some key tips for staying safe online, no matter what your age might be.
- Take advantage of parental controls. There are many different settings to adapt depending on the age and needs of your children. Some limit access to certain websites and apps, and others limit the actual time per day that someone can use the internet.
- Know the passwords to your children’s accounts, but remind them not to share them with anyone else.
- Consider limiting the use of personal devices to common area rooms like the kitchen and living room; this reduces the chances that children will talk online with strangers or visit inappropriate sites.
- Discuss the responsibility that comes along with using the internet, and explain the concepts behind “defamation” and “libel”. Children often don’t understand that the things they post online can do real damage to others and that there are consequences to negative or bullying posts.
- Consider having your children (or teens) sign an internet safety contract, and post it in a common area as a reminder. There are premade contracts available on line to use, or use as a guide to personalize your own.