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Online and Texting Safety Tips for Kids and Parents

Safety Tips for Kids and Parents, Once upon a time kids had to go outdoors to play a game with their friends, get up to change the TV station, and walk 3 miles to school. Children have access to cutting-edge technology. And their parents find it challenging to stay up a bit farther down the line.

You’re probably already aware of the stress if you’re a parent, but the reality is still overwhelming. Kids have access to more information than any previous age. They use tablets, laptops, and smartphones for virtual learning at school and at home. These devices aren’t going away anytime soon, so families should discuss online safety.

Texting and the internet can improve our lives. It can also cause harm to us and those we care about. You want your children to be able to use it, but you also want them to be safe. How are you going to get both?

Internet Safety Guidelines for your Children

Keeping your children entirely safe online might be challenging. Even if you set up parental restrictions on your home computer, your children will use many other computers. To keep your children safe online, you’ll need to teach them how to make good choices even when you’re not around.

Here are some general guidelines for teaching your children about online safety:

1. Choose strong passwords

The primary line of security against hackers is passwords. Many people repeat the same password across many accounts. They use simple passwords to guess since they are also simple to remember.

Build a secure password by using a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols at least 12 characters long. Never use simple terms, phrases, or personal information such as a phone number or the names of family members.

2. Keep your privacy settings turned on

Web browsers and social media platforms all have privacy options that you may change. If you leave them turned off, it may improve your browsing experience. But hackers may also intercept it. Keep your privacy settings enabled to be safe. Make appropriate adjustments to your gadgets and keep the settings on your own devices.

3. Be cautious about what you post

It is important to understand how much information is excessive. Safety tips for kids and parents such as teenagers may occasionally disclose personal information online to share milestones. This can be important information for identity thieves or burglars if posted online. Personal or inappropriate images can also attract online hunters. They can harm future educational and work prospects.

4. Beware of strangers

You’ve probably already taught your children that all strangers are potentially harmful. Remind them that this applies to their online actions and that strangers are online. While teens are more vulnerable to cyber predators, they can still target children.

Let your kids know the importance of being cautious online. Teach them to alert an adult if someone they don’t know speaks with them or makes them feel uneasy.

5. Remember that your identity is significant

Some children expose themselves to identity theft by sharing personal information online. A child’s identity can be just as valuable as, if not more valuable than, that of an adult. Scammers can get children to reveal personal information to perpetrate identity theft.

Do not divulge too much personal information. Do not share your date of birth, address, and Social Security number. Here are some ways to help you protect your child from identity theft.

Internet Safety Guidelines for Parents

1. Know the dangers online

Kids are generally one of your family’s weakest links to cybersecurity. It might be due to a lack of understanding of the internet’s hazards. Safety tips for kids and parents Teach children about questionable online activities. Encourage them to seek help if something seems out of the ordinary. Knowing how to use the internet will help you recognize the dangers. But it will also help you communicate with your children.

2. Encourage your children to come to you if they have an issue

You’ll want your children to come to you rather than hide if they get into problems online. Even if your children follow all the rules, they may encounter a dangerous website.

3. Discuss the importance of safe and ethical social networking, which includes the following:

  • You should only add people you know as friends.
  • Respecting and being courteous to others online
  • Using a stock photo as your main profile photo
  • Using a first name or a nickname
  • Never download applications without authorization
  • Not posting images of persons without their permission.
  • Never share passwords with friends.

4. Keep an eye on what’s going on online

It’s stressful enough to watch your kids when they’re not online. Thankfully, some cybersecurity solutions keep track of their online activities. Install a cybersecurity program with parental controls on your children’s devices. It can restrict specific gaming features, track their position, back up their data, and regulate their screen time.

5. Ensure that your antivirus software is up to date

Although Internet security software won’t protect you from every attack, it will detect and delete most malware. Make sure to update your operating system and your applications. They add an essential layer of protection. This guide will help you find the best antivirus software.

know the right way to handle a child's online and texting behavior. With these Safety Tips for Kids and Parents being helpful, you will be on the right track.

Texting Safety Guidelines for Parents

Texting is an essential mode of communication for many teenagers. However, a lack of maturity might get your child into trouble when it comes to texting. Assist your teen in understanding — and avoiding — the dangers of texting.

1. Research

If a parent doesn’t know what an app is, they won’t realize the potential dangers of texting on it. Educate yourself on the social media applications and sites your children can text or direct message.

Most social networking platforms allow you to send direct messages to other people. Know the many sorts of social media and their many norms and restrictions. The more you know about what your child can do on the app, the more you’ll be able to teach them safe behaviors.

2. Have this discussion as soon as possible

Consider your expectations for your child’s texting safety from the start. Tablets are popular among young children. They can use them for texting and direct messaging. If you allow your child to use a tablet for games or apps, be aware of the different apps’ messaging capabilities.

Checking the app’s privacy settings can guarantee your young child’s safety. If possible, parental controls are an excellent alternative for young children. Make sure this isn’t a one-and-done chat. Discuss your expectations and any changes to your texting rules with your child.

3. Remind your child that everything they send out is permanent

We cannot help but wonder, are text messages stored on sim cards? Texting and direct messaging are fantastic ways to stay in touch with people. But they also leave a digital footprint—a trail of data left behind when someone uses the internet.

Sending a text message is akin to squeezing toothpaste out of a tube. You can’t take anything back once you’ve sent it.

4. Set guidelines for texting

Establish your rules before allowing your child to use a phone. Sometimes regulations can feel like punishment. But your child will be entirely aware of the rules and penalties before giving them phones. This way helps them in making the connection between their acts and consequences.

5. Set Boundaries

Here are some messaging guidelines to consider for safety tips for kids and parents:

  • Make a contact list for your child to text.
  • Which websites or apps they can use for communication.
  • When they can and cannot text.
  • What information should be in the text?
  • Which social media sites they can use for testing.
  • When they can buy a phone or tablet.
  • When your child can share their location

6. Discuss phone etiquette with your child

Discuss your family standards with your child and the social conventions of phone etiquette. Put your phone away while talking to people. Silence your phone when attending meetings or in calm spaces (such as a library or class). Always remind them to be kind.

One more thing…

Parents: What you do matters more than what you say. So be a good role model, and don’t let your children see you breaking these guidelines.

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Carol Gardner

Carol is the editor at Defending Digital, she work with her colleagues to produce great advice, reviews, and how-to articles that help keep you and your family safe online. She raised 2 kids in this “digital generation” and they are now both in college. We hope you find our content useful.

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