Internet Safety — 10 Tips to Secure Your Family And Kids Online
We all know the internet is having a large influence on people in terms of making their life better in this digital era, but its growing influence on kids is a big concern for parents today.
Today, kids are growing and improving their knowledge with technology, but with so much information flowing over the internet, it is so easy for malicious actors to attack children due to their lack of knowledge.
Due to kids’ sensitive nature, they often fall into the trap of online scams, cyber-bullying, personal information overexposure and meeting sexual predators. These are some of the biggest challenges faced by children today over the internet.
It is getting difficult for parents to ensure their kids’ and family online safety over the internet and protect them from the risks they are exposed to.
76% of the parents today in a US-based PCMag survey agreed that they are highly concerned about their kids and family online safety.
With Safer Internet Day 2020 happening all over the world with a focus on raising awareness related to online safety and promoting positive usage of technology, It is equally important for parents to follow some smart actionable steps to safeguard their children and family from online threats.
Bad guys over the internet are getting smart, it is important that you and your kids become smarter than them.
Here are the top safety tips that you can apply to protect your kids and family while they navigate online:
1. Provide Education to Your Kids about Online threats and Cybersecurity
With so many online threats looming over the internet today, it is important for parents to educate their children about safe browsing over the internet. Informing and guiding kids about how to escape malicious sites, different forms of cyberbullying and other necessary topics are also important. These help your kids and family members understand the bigger picture over the internet.
You, as a parent, should try to speak openly to your kids and family members about online threats they could face during their activities over the internet. The more you speak about issues like cyberbullying, data hack and online harassment, the easier it becomes for them, to understand what they see or hear online.
2. Teach your kids to avoid disclosure of personal information over the internet
When your kids and family members are navigating online, there is a high risk of identity theft online because most of your family members believe that they have none to lose due to lack of knowledge. Kids hovering over the internet are most sensitive to such identity theft incidents online.
Scammers present online are at their best in fooling or tricking kids to hack their social security numbers and other details to commit identity theft online. Kids do have some highly sensitive information like birth, address and SSN details with them so they shouldn’t share them freely with anyone online.
3. Put Usage Limits and Track Your Kids Time Spent Online
The internet can be a fascinating world for your kids and other family members, but remember overdose of anything is harmful. So, you should keep a keen eye on the time spent by your kids and family members online.
If you find them getting too addicted to the internet, you can easily set usage limits in their internet-enabled devices. Make sure you clearly tell your kids that they can’t be online for more than the threshold time set on their device for internet usage.
4. Keep an Eye on phishing scams
You might be knowledgeable and aware enough to know that you should not click on a malicious URL, even if it is from your closest friend. However, don’t expect the same from kids and other members in your family who have just tasted the slice of the internet.
It is important that you teach your kids about phishing, spam emails or malicious messages online. You can also install quality family security software or apps like Titan Family Security with Parental control function that easily recognises and blocks such dodgy URLs from your kids or family member devices.
5. Use Robust and Secure Passwords
Passwords are a strong defence mechanism that you can imply to prevent cyber attacks from hackers, yet many people apply the same or weak password on their important accounts online. Often, kids and other family members are not aware of strong password protection methods; hence, it is important that you teach them about how to keep their personal accounts safe online by putting unique passwords for the different accounts using them.
Of course, you can also provide them with a password manager if they forget to remember multiple passwords for better protection.
6. Protect Kids from Social Networks Overexposure
Social networks like Facebook, Instagram, etc, can be a fun place to be at for your family members, including kids. But social media can also attract cybercriminals. Keep a close eye on your social accounts of tour kids and family members.
If someone is repetitively messaging inappropriate messages, i.e., bullying, offensive, sexually arousing, etc.to your family members, you should immediately take action by complaining against such a person both online and offline. Further up, you also teach your kids and other family members to protect their social media accounts from getting hacked.
7. Take regular data backups
Cybercriminals can easily lock access to your computer using ransomware for you and your family members, so you can’t easily access your important files, photos or tax information. One of the effective ways to prevent such attacks is by taking regular backups of important data installed on your family members computer.
8. Install Quality Parental Control Software
You can put technology against technology to curb down its side effects. What this apparently means is that you can install a quality phone monitoring software or application like Titan Family Security to keep a track of your family’s over social health.
For busy parents, tracking the social media and internet activities of their children and family members often get difficult as they don’t have much time to do that. In that case, parental control apps like Titan family security can be a great help.
Titan Family Security has some amazing features to check your kids’ online behaviour and control what they are doing with their smartphones and other internet-enabled devices anytime, anywhere.
Some of the most amazing features of Titan Family Security include GPS/location tracking, social tracking & security, two-way audio, live video sharing, video surveillance, security alerts, geofencing alerts, real-time security updates, etc.
9. Keep Up-to-Date Software in Children Phone
It is also one of the important internet safety tips that parents should follow to make sure all the latest security patches or updates of a particular software are installed on time in their kids’ phone.
These security patches or updates are provided by companies to improve and secure the software you and your kids use on a daily basis. In the past also, flaws in top software like Adobe Flash, Google Chrome, etc. have been found due to non-updation of these online applications by users.
Hence, it is very important that you, as a parent, regularly update your kids’ devices to prevent all kinds of online threats.
10. Figure out vulnerabilities in Your Home Wi-Fi Network
Home Wi-Fi is the first entry point for cyber hackers to breach online privacy and safety of your family. Attacking home routers to gain access to internet-connected devices at your home is very easy for hackers these days.
hence, it is very important that you install powerful home security systems and devices like smart bells, smart cameras, etc. to avoid any kind of “intruders” to your home internet network.
You should stress the importance of avoiding public WI-Fi networks to your kids and family members. You must know that cybercriminals and hacks are always ready to breach your private or sensitive information when you are on a public Wi-Fi network while roaming at malls, coffee shops, etc. Even if your kids connect, tell them to use VPNs.