Does child safety on internet often bother you much? You’re not the only person with this worry. We see too many parents with growing concern. About the safety of kids online.
While there is an abundance of the information and useful knowledge online. There is also a plethora of wrong, and behaviorally offensive content.
Another worrying factor for parents here is online privacy for children. Most of the applications, programs subscriptions, and portals require signing up with personal details. This information is a prerequisite to using many platforms.
Let’s explore further to understand what are the dangers and how you can mitigate them
Child Safety On Internet – A Thing Of This Generation
Online safety was not a real problem in our ages. There was no such issue of privacy and safety in front of screens. The world of the web grew late last century. And is now increasing relentlessly.
Now the children face threats from the online world as well. And parents need to understand how they can ensure children’s online safety.
To begin with parents should understand the reasons. Without some knowledge of the threats and risks we obviously won’t be able to help our children meaningfully.
Some Pertinent Threats To Child Safety On Internet
From cyber predators to social media or simply the content on the internet. The risks for children in an online environment can be varying. Here we will discuss some of the imminent threats and what striving parents can do about it.
In one of the surveys conducted by a leading online security company. Over 90% of the teens agreed on the fact that cyberbullying is one of the growing safety problems over the internet. Online behavioral surveys indicate that approximately half of the children witness some form of bullying over social media and other platforms.
Like real-world bullying child safety on internet also needs dedicated attention and prevention. The most certain way of dealing with this issue is to talk to your children about it.
Parents should try to monitor as much as possible the online activities of their young ones. They should identify if there’s anything that requires intervention. Whatever be the medium of bullying the symptoms and the behavioral changes in kids due to it remains the same.
If parents spot any unusual behavior or change in children’s attitude they should discuss it. This should not be ignored at all. We advise a proactive approach here and will advise all parents to instill awareness about the matter in children.
Children should be encouraged and given enough space to discuss anything that might be causing them distress online. In any such instance where things seem to be getting from bad to worse professional cyberbullying help may be sought as well.
2. Virtual Gaming
Online Gaming is also one such platform making kids vulnerable to all forms of threats. Online gaming has taken more of a form of virtual play for children. Connecting them and letting them have a real-time voice and video chat with kids all over the world.
You should remain vigilant of your kids actions and speech to ensure that they don’t develop bad manners. Similarly keep an eye on the friends that your child has at home and school. So that they stay away from the adverse effects of external influences.
Virtual gaming has taken a new toll these days. This is a growing concern impacting child safety on internet. A vast number of popular games these days also portray violence and extremism. Children in their early years have a receptive mind that quickly adapts to new and unique experiences.
Exposure to such content has deep sub-conscious effects on their minds. As per expert’s exposure to such content makes kids more harsh, impatient, violent, and less empathetic.
We cannot altogether refuse children from playing games online. But what we can do is not to let them play in isolation. Most of these games require verbal communication. Which can serve as an easy infiltration medium for language issues, with children playing in front; it can be easier for parents to keep an eye.
Secondly, parents should be aware of the games on which the child is spending time. In case parents see any potential threatening games they should immediately take a charge.
Remember that kids have a reward-seeking nature and so the fun of these games will ultimately compel them. Therefore strict observation is advised in this regard. Here you may also like reading Rewarding Children-When And How?
3. Online Predators
The online world serves as a very easy and convenient tool for sexual predators and pedophiles to target innocent children. As per one of the surveys the child sexual predators linked with the internet have doubled in 2018-19. As compared to the same data of four years ago.
Online sexual assault is an increasing and alarming situation that is completely unprecedented. It calls for parents to have adequate awareness of the online issues to deal with these threats.
There’s a plethora of guidance, help, and tips available online to adequately deal with this problem. However the most important factor common everywhere is communication. Talk to your kids ask them about their online activities and their experiences.
Remember children like sharing and telling stories. They only need an inquisitive ear for those. Parents should fulfil that and lend that ear. Parents should inquire and take interest in kids activities. So they can identify any issue. Requiring their attention.
4. Vulnerable Private Information
With internet and things going online. We have to remain vigilant more than enough. To protect our information.
We don’t mean that you are not smart enough to safeguard your private and financial details. You must be, but not the kids. Children don’t understand the online boundaries.
They are not shrewd enough to grasp the reputation and identity of the website. They may inadvertently post-social media profiles, contact numbers, home addresses. And other personally identifiable information. Which may result in some form of trouble.
Another concerning factor in this regard is the auto-saving option in browsers and websites which stores our login and other details for easy or single sign-on purposes on our devices. Children using the same devices have all this sensitive information at their fingertips.
In this regard, parents should educate children on the information they are supposed to share online and make them understand the difference between private and general information. Kids should be trained to alert their parents immediately if they come across any such instance where sensitive information is being sought.
Similarly, if there are computing devices with saved financial information or credentials then those should be kept at a separate place away from the access of children.
The words phishing may be a bit unheard of because of their technical nature, let us explain to you what these are and how they can be a detrimental weapon for harming our safety online. This also is a threat to child safety on internet.
Phishing is simply the email messages that trick users into clicking malicious links or downloading harmful attachments. These emails are sometimes so brilliantly engineered that even some techy adults fall into the trick and become victims.
Young kids and children are increasingly using emails for all educational purposes and are at greater risk of falling into the trap.
Parents should guide kids not to click any link or download any attachment which they are not sure about. Parents should educate children to open emails from the trusted senders only.
6. Online Scams
The online world is full of scams, from winning a lottery to investment proposals the scams are of all types in nature. Children won’t be falling victims to the property and investment options online or they won’t be tricked into an online dating scam.
But they can easily become victims of things enticing their interest and there are plenty of those too. From gaming offers to movie tickets and alike, the cyber world has a lot to offer in disguise making the online world riskier and uncertain.
Well, scams are nothing to worry about if your kid is educated and wise enough, and it’s your responsibility to make them educated and knowledgeable.
7. Personality And Psychological Issues
This must be something you would be least thinking to make part of the list of hazards a child is faced with in an online world.
Obviously, how would something completely locked behind the screen serve as stimuli for personality disorders and complexities in children? Well, let us explain how children are at risk of it online.
Take an example of any social media platform. The connection there is not limited by the boundary, geography, or any demographics. Kids, there are connected with their counterparts coming from diverse backgrounds, social classes, ethical values, norms, and culture.
As a result, a child may be exposed to content in the form of posts, stories, and news feeds which may sow the seed of resentment in their minds.
For example, pictures of a child enjoying extravagant holidays on a private island may trigger a wave of jealousy and complexity in the child’s growing mind.
To be honest, such content may upset many adults too but we are emotionally mature and can deal with it in a better way. But kids cannot. Secondly, it’s not about any single story or post, it’s an ongoing dilemma subconsciously hurting the child psychology.
Another example may be offensive jokes, violent or extreme content or misinformation. Or upsetting news and images from different sources that may create some havoc in children’s minds and personalities. A category of such content may be a disturbing continuous popping up of ads which is becoming more and more prevalent online.
Well, there’s no cure or remedy to it except for being vigilant of the online activities of children. Checking their online activities. And engaging with them more often in meaningful conversation.
If parents see early symptoms of any personality disorder they should not ignore. They can even seek professional child counseling services if they realize the need.
Final Word On Child Safety
Child safety is an important concern for parents. And we hope that this guide will help them gain a better understanding of the issue. This is a topic that requires continued attention and long-term vision. This guide will surely help you craft a better way for a safer online experience for children. Before leaving you may also like reading A Guide On Happy Child Growth