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Protect your family

Helping to keep your home safe online

Keeping your family safe in cyberspace can be a full-time job.

Teaching your youngsters about the online world – known as E-Parenting – is just as important as being sure to educate your children about the traditional dangers found in the offline world.

Areas to be tackled, talked about and fully understood within your family unit should include:

  • Cyberbullying
  • Sexting
  • Instant Messaging
  • Chatrooms
  • Social Networks
  • Online Gaming

 

Only children older than 13 are allowed to have a page on the likes of Facebook.

Learn and understand

It may sound scary, especially if you feel you do not understand technology as well as your children.

But there are lots of resources out there to get help from.

To get you started, below are some quick and useful tips.

You can learn more about each of these specific topics by reading our related articles. Just click the links.

 

Be prepared

Technology and the internet bring far more positives to our lives than they do negatives.

There’s no better way to protect your family from the challenges of the 21st century than sitting down with your children and being open and honest.

Only by being aware of the risks can you learn how to deal with them.

 

  • Social Networks Only children older than 13 are allowed to have a page on the likes of Facebook. This is the recommended age by experts.
  • Stranger Danger Tell children never to add ‘friends’ to their social networks or instant messaging accounts unless they know them in real life.
  • Too Much Information Youngsters should never reveal personal information on social networks such as mobile phone numbers, home or school addresses. 
  • Mobile Internet Remember that the web doesn’t stop with your computer. Children access cyberspace via their mobile phones and can use instant messaging to chat to strangers wherever they have their handset.
  • Online Gaming Monitor use of the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 or Nintendo Wii. Children can interact with people they don’t know of all ages while having fun using multiplayer games through your broadband connection. 
  • Watch Out Don’t let youngsters under 10 use the computer without you keeping a close eye on what sites they visit and who they are speaking to. Know their passwords and share email accounts. 
  • Join Your Kids Become friends with your children on social networks. This way you can monitor who they become friends with and who they are sharing intimate details of their – and your – life with.  
  • Bullying Signs Watch for distress or anger when your child receives a text message on their mobile phone or a comment on Instant Messaging. This could signify they are being cyberbullied.
  • Explicit Texts Sexting is the term given to the problem of children sending each other sexually explicit text messages or photos from their mobile phones. Explain to teenagers that sending these pictures could be against the law.