Parents should not be blind to the dangers that arise any time a child uses the Internet. In fact, they should be made very aware of them, and in the interests of your child’s safety, we’ve included a list of potential problems. Keep in mind however, that just because the internet can be dangerous, however, does not mean that it has to be dangerous for your child. Dangers of the internet can include:
- Coming across inappropriate content
- Giving out details
- Being asked inappropriate things
- Struggling to socialize with real people
These can all be combatted in the house to allow the child to be safe when using the internet – whether it is to study or to play games. Parents and schools can take steps to ensure that they are able to keep their child safe while allowing them to experience the freedom to develop themselves and explore their own wants and needs creatively. Creating this safe environment is fairly easy – we’ve included some popular solutions below!
Oftentimes, if you contact your ISP, they can help you step-by-step by blocking certain websites, or using a filter (for example, if a word shows up too many times on a page that you deem inappropriate, it is blocked) and turning safe search settings on. This can stop your child from accidentally stumbling upon content while they are at home.
This is more common in schools, but it is another approach to ensure that children are staying safe and are not able to venture on to websites that are inappropriate or illegal. This will lock the child out of the web page. Similar programmes can be used for home computers if the parents wish to clamp down, but they can prove costly.
Teaching the child awareness of what is out there on the internet iss the best way to make sure that they do not fall victim – let them know that not everyone they meet on the internet is nice. Warn them of things that they should be aware of, and make sure that they know to never give their details out under any circumstances to anyone, regardless of who they say they are.
Watching your child as they are using a computer or the internet, is a great way to make sure that nothing bad happens – and if something does, that you are there to navigate away from the problem and explain your child why that is something they cannot do or see. They are much more likely to pay attention to what they are doing, and not deviate from their reasons for using the internet in the first place. Sitting with them and explaining things as they happen also gives the child the knowledge to make the safest choices in the future and enables them to become more independent.