Parents do everything in their power to keep their children safe and healthy at all times, whether it is preparing them before going out in the sun or being cautious while crossing the street, or wearing a helmet while cycling. But is there anything they do to protect their kids from online bullies, predators, and some inappropriate content available online?
Here is what you can do to protect your kids from cyberbullying and harassment and keep them safe.
Best tips to protect your kids from digital backlash
- Talk about the online safety
- Sign a contract
- Create some screen-free zones
- Use parental monitoring software
- Monitor their social media posts
- Go through their privacy settings
- Set an example
- Set time limits.
Talk about online safety.
In this era, the Internet has developed into a fantastic source of information, learning, and entertainment. But, along with all these amazing contents and all the people utilizing them at some time, it’s very important to discuss online safety with your kids:
- Teach them not to give personal information
- List out some useful and useless websites for them
- Tell them they can’t talk to strangers or accept friend requests.
- Teach them to speak up whenever they feel uncomfortable.
Sign a contract
You heard it right! Sign a contract with your kids about social media uses. While doing so, you also involve them in the discussion process and create the contract together. You can talk about how they feel and how excessive social media usage can hamper their lives during this time. They will face the consequences if they break any of the rules. Strictly stick to the contract, leaving some space for the amendments.
Create some screen-free zones
Is there any corner of your room that is screen-free, completely? Well, I guess it is a big NO. So, you can set some screen-free zones for yourself and your kids. You can set clear boundaries along with your children about where they are allowed to use their mobiles, computers, tablets, etc., and where they cannot use them at all. With these screen-free zones at your place, you can engage in some good conversation with your kid and talk about how they feel. A few of the suggestions could be:
- Dinner table
- In the car
- In the bedroom at night.
Use parental monitoring software.
Indeed, you can’t be with them all the time. It’s for some good reason that your kid requires their own space, and you have to trust them with that. But as a parent, it is also important for you to know what they are up to. In that case, you can use parental monitoring software, like MobileSpy, and understand what they are doing online. But before installing it, you should let them know about it.
By doing so, you can receive alerts when they are having some trouble and help them out as soon as possible. You can keep them safe without invading their privacy in this way.
Monitor their social media posts
The use of social media and teens is growing rapidly. Is it a compulsion to post a picture of your kid and their friends at the beach? Or do a stranger need to know if your kid is at the mall? In that case, you can ask them to see their accounts.
You can then see what they have been posting lately and whom they are talking or hanging out with. You can then take silly pictures and teach them what is appropriate to post and what not.
Go through their privacy settings.
Furthermore, you can check their browser and application privacy settings. You can also disable a few unnecessary tracking features and cookies if required, which might affect their online safety.
Additionally, you can also set your kid’s profile to private and ensure that only friends or family can view the content they post online. It is important to be themselves online rather than showing the fake side. But, also explain to them very clearly that they need not talk to any strangers or share any kinds of personal information with them at all.
Set an example
Well, before telling your kids not to use cell phones a lot and be available on social media all the time, you should keep yourself far from the media itself. By doing so, you can set a positive example and let your children follow your path effectively.
Afterward, you will have to hold yourself to the same standards as your kids. You can utilize the screen-free zones during this time and conduct some tech-free activities with your children. You will be fully presented in the family time, which will be visible to your kids, and hence they will follow your path immediately.
Set time limits
Those were the days when our parents limited us to watching TV 1-2 hours a day, but kids these days are sticking to the TV screen or their devices all the time. Hence, to make them more effective, you can set the time limits and not let them use any devices if time is exceeded. They might feel bad, but you are the parent, and you have the right to do so for your kid.
A parent feels a little insecure about your kid’s online activity. These days, kids have access to technology and know everything more than ever before. You can utilize any of the above-listed measures to ensure your kid is doing well online and active in real life.