Internet safety: Being aware of the unknown

Technology is racing ahead and we are all advancing. Sadly, crime is up to speed.
From stranger danger to online crime, we are surrounded by risks and kids are the most vulnerable to them. As much as we’d like to protect them from all the harm in the world, it is more difficult now than ever because of the impact the Internet has on our lives.
cyber bulling
Internet is essential in various aspects today and that includes studies. Therefore, it is a waste to try keeping our kids away from it. What we must do instead, is to help them understand the risks involved so that they use the world wide web safely.
Let’s take a look at the three major types of cyber risks today:

Cyber bullying

                    Approximately 20% kids receive hateful messages through the Internet.
This is the most common type of risk for kids today. It involves the exchange of hateful, rude, insulting, and/or harassing mails, texts, and videos.
To keep your children safe from cyber bullying, it is important to teach them to be kind and civil online. At the same time, it is paramount that you advise them on what to do when they receive a hateful message.
Let’s take a look at a few safety measures:

  1. Kids usually trust their friends blindly. They don’t think twice before sharing passwords and other private information with their close ones. This is unacceptable and we must teach our kids that passwords are not meant to be shared with anyone. If your child has shared a password, make sure she changes it immediately.
  2. Logging out of computers after using them is a simple yet powerful safety measure. Make it a habit from day one so that it becomes a process. Your child will automatically log out every time she is done using the Internet.
  3. Teach your children to keep a copy of hateful messages and to report them to school.
  4. Threatening messages can and must be reported to the police.

harming online reputation

Harming online reputation

Online reputation is your presence on the Internet. It is determined by the videos/images you share and your social profiles among other things.
Kids generally find it fascinating to share information online. They do not realize that it could have negative ramifications. It is up to us to teach them about security and privacy online. Let’s see how we can do that:

  1. All social media accounts must be protected with updated privacy and security settings. Visibility and access of posts must also be controlled.
  2. Games, phones, computers, et cetera have parental controls that you must definitely look into and update according to your requirements.
  3. Set limits and rules for your kids but talk to them about it and let them know why you are imposing these limits. Kids hate being told what to do (or not to do) without reason.


Cyber-crime includes phishing, computer virus, and spam emails. Out of curiosity, kids tend to open unknown emails and click on fishy links. This can lead to the theft of private information, virus ruining your devices, and more.
Here are tips to prevent this from happening:

  1. Always have a strong password for your home network
  2. Teach your kids not to click on unknown links or open emails from strange email IDs
  3. Always have your kid type a link down instead of copying it from somewhere in order to avoid falling prey to spam websites
  4. Talk to your kids openly about cyber-crime and how they must be open about it with you
  5. Safeguard your systems with anti-virus

A few steps can go a long way in making Internet usage safe and positive.

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