June is racing by, how have you celebrated Internet Safety Month? Coming into its twelfth year, Internet Safety Month has been an opportunity to stop children from being victimized in online spaces. A group of companies and organizations, including FOSI, Google, and the National Cyber Security Alliance, are using this month the teach best practices to keep your family safe on the internet.
Let’s face it, our kids are using the internet whether or not we want them to. A decade ago, parents and teachers tried to restrict internet access, believing they’d succeed. However, internet availability is too widespread that our kids are extremely tech-savvy now. It’s best to meet them halfway – give in gracefully, but with a mutually acceptable set of rules and modes to help them use the internet positively.
Taking a break from social media can be a way to relax a bit and think more, and for some families it is also a way to enforce general household rules.
These are trying times online.News stories proliferate about bad behavior such as cyberbullying, doxing, swatting and online harassment. From fake news to hacking to online trolls, the Internet has never seemed so concerning.
Google made a bit of history by opening up its universe of apps and services to users under 13 as their parents design it. Family Link, the name of the new parental control toolset, describes it well: Parents download the tools to their own and the kids’ devices, then link them up for a whole family’s real-time digital device management.
Technology has taken over our daily lives. There are many instances where life passes us by because our eyes are glued to our tiny devices. As a way to minimize our daily technology intake, here are a few helpful tips:
If you were to Google your child today what would pop up? Would that article they wrote for their school’s newspaper show up? How about that class award they just received? Or would it be that inappropriate photo at last week’s party? Everything they post on the Internet is part of their online DNA. It is their digital trail left behind for the world to access at moment’s notice.