As an IT support company, we are champions of new technology and innovation. It’s great for learning and has expanded the horizons of education.
But as parents, we also understand the importance of keeping your child tech-safe.
So here are our top tips for keeping your child safe on the internet.
Installing parental control software, such as Norton Family or McAfee Parental Controls, (many others are available) is a great way of protecting your kids online.
The software shows you which sites your kids are visiting, the terms they’re searching for and identifies potential dangers before they become problems.
You can also add things such as social network supervision on your PC, text message supervision (may vary depending on the package you choose) and time supervision.
Parental control from the Cloud
You can also activate parental controls from the Cloud, and a good example of this is with the Home Internet Security option from OpenDNS.
By logging on to your home router and re-directing it to the OpenDNS server (full instructions on how to do this on their website!), you can then access a host of parental control options, which protect every device in your home instantly.
While this option is more web-traffic specific (it can’t track text messages for example), it is very difficult for even the most tech-savvy kids to get round.
Individual Wifi logins
Many routers will allow you to create individual (and personalised) wireless networks for each child. This means that they can access the internet on any PC or mobile device/tablet, and their predetermined settings will apply.
With a separate wireless network for each child, you can make their individual settings age-appropriate by blocking certain websites, imposing time restrictions on others and shutting down your child’s internet access after 8pm, for example.
- Have a parent-only password for every device
- Turn on Google Safe Search on each device, to filter out explicit images, videos and websites from search results.
- Set safety-mode on YouTube to filter out explicit content (or use YouTube Kids for younger children).
It’s great to have parental controls in place, but it’s also really important to explain to your kids how to behave online – and when others’ behaviour should be reported.
- Never give your password out
- Never give out personal information online – email address, phone number, home address or name of your school.
- Don’t meet up with someone you have been talking to online, unless you have permission from a parent and they can be with you.
- Opening files, pictures of texts from someone you don’t know or trust may contain viruses or nasty messages.
- Remember that people might lie about who they are online – always remember that you can never be 100% sure.
- It’s never ok to be unkind to someone, just because you’re typing it over the internet.
- If you are in any doubt or something is making you uncomfortable, tell a parent, carer or teacher.
Projectfive is proud to support Safer Internet Day. For more information on this year’s campaign, click here.