Child safe internet use is wise. The internet is not inherently dangerous. This is not to say that the internet does not carry threats. It can be quite threatening however it is only a safety problem if the internet is not used wisely. It is therefore important for parents to monitor the use of the internet and to educate children on safety and privacy issues.
For child safe internet use there are a number of issues parents need to be concerned about. There are at least six main issues to consider. These include the amount of overall computer use; websites that are not principled and include violence, hate groups and pornography; internet predators; online abuse and bullying; privacy issues and the likelihood of young people divulging confidential stuff; and downloading viruses and other malicious software.
Responsible parents will implement child safe internet policies. This will of course take in to account the age and maturity of your children. This policy could include the use of parental controls and enabling the child to use their wisdom to decide on a reasonable amount of time they could be online for. This later point empowers the child and endorses a parent’s trust in a child. It leads to negotiation and mature discussion.
Policies ought to do with privacy issues. The child should be made aware of the problems of divulging confidential matters online. Confidential matters such as the personal details of the child including their address and phone number should not be given to strangers. It also includes bank account numbers and the activities of the family. Children ought to be made aware about scams, free offers and incentives that might be used to gain private information.
More pragmatically for child safe internet use there is software that can be placed on the computer that enable parents to control its usage. This software may be web browsing and email software. As a child gets older restrictions may be lifted but this needs to occur in negotiation and wise decision making by parents. It is also important to remember that even parental controls are not fool proof.
There are also a number of child and adolescent portals offered by more responsible websites. Yahoo for example seems to have a really good approach to these sought of issues. Programs are also available on the computer and router which block unwanted content and activities. Finally there are parental controls available on security suites one can buy. Most virus protector sellers sell security suites that allow parental controls as free add-on packs.
Child safe internet use is important. With the wise use of the internet by children with parental supervision there is no reason why the use of the internet ought to be considered dangerous. Children can be easily guided by caring, sensible and responsible parents so that they can enjoy all that the internet can provide.