How to Childproof your Home Internet
Most children are on the internet nowadays and most of them know how to use the internet better than most adults. Unfortunately, children are often not developed enough to understand the dangers of the internet. Children are more likely to be targeted by cyber crimes than adults are. You don’t want your children to become victim to identity theft or to get a virus on your computer. Therefore you want to childproof your internet and we’ve created a guide on how to do this properly.
Explain the dangers to your children
This might not be about making your internet safer but it’s an important step that should not be forgotten. Your children need to learn about the internet having dangers. They need to know that they should never give out personal information to websites and that there are people on the internet who mean to harm them. People might pretend to be something they’re not. If your children understand this then it makes much more sense to them as to why they should be careful with the internet.
Use parental controls
You can easily download a parental control program that blocks certain parts of the internet from your children. You probably don’t want your youngest children to see pornography by accident. But you probably don’t want your children to see hate or violence websites as well. It’s up to you as a parent to determine what you want your children to see and what you don’t want them to see, so make a conscious choice in this.
Check the privacy settings of your child’s social media
Perhaps your children are still too young to use social media but at a certain point it becomes unavoidable. Social media isn’t harmful per definition, but it’s important that only certain people can view your child’s information. It’s best to walk through the privacy settings with your child, so they understand what these mean and what negative consequences it can have when everyone can find your personal information. It’s probably best to make all information only viewable by friends, but this up to you.
Strong antivirus software
Of course you always need good antivirus software, but when you have children this is even more important. Children are a lot more likely to download a virus onto your computer by accident. If you have good antivirus software then your children be shielded from making such a crucial mistake.
Limit the time they can use the computer
Many parental controls allow you to the limit the amount of time your child can use the computer. This will result in the computer locking itself after a certain amount of computer time. It can also be used to lock the computer automatically after a certain time so your children don’t use the computer after their bedtime. You could also install such a program on their phone so they don’t stay up using their phone until deep in the night.
Set spam filters on their email accounts
Eventually your children will start using email, perhaps only for creating accounts, but they might still be receiving spam mails with inappropriate messages. Sometimes you’ll receive sexually explicit advertisements or phishing mails. You don’t want your children to see these and thus you can set a spam filter on their email account. This will prevent them from seeing any of these potentially dangerous emails and keep them safe.
Watch out with webcams
If your children are still young then it is best to prevent them from having access to a webcam altogether. A computer with a webcam should only be present in a room where you can monitor what they’re doing. If they’re older than they can probably use a webcam safely, but make sure that the webcam is closed when they aren’t using it. Of course you hope that no malware gets installed on a computer but if it does then you are better off when the webcam can’t be operated
If you look out for all of these things that you’re doing well in protecting your child from the internet. It’s essential that you involve your child in all these safety measures so that they learn how to handle the internet responsibly as they get older and eventually have to take these measures themselves.
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