The internet is a powerful tool for a child to have when it comes to researching information and developing skills. However, there is a darker side to the web that children should not be exposed to.
As a loving mother and dedicated physical therapist, Glendalyn Fodra always has people’s best interests heart, whether it’s her children or her patients. Safety is imperative to Mrs. Fodra, both at her office and especially at home with her family. Over the years, she’s researched and applied simple methods that can help teach your child to use the internet safely.
Below, Glendalyn Fodra shares five ways to help your child feel and be safe on the web.
1. Initiate Conversations About Internet Safety
Start talking to your children about internet safety as early as possible. Ensure that you speak to them about the dangers of the internet and the steps that they can take to protect themselves. Let them know that they can always come to you if they see something that they don’t understand or talk to someone with sinister motives. Ensure that your children know that you will not judge them for their internet usage and that you are willing to help them solve any problems they encounter.
2. Use a VPN
A Virtual Private Network (VPN) helps to prevent hackers and other internet users from tracking your location. It connects your computer to a secret and secure server and uses encryption to help you avoid discovery. It masks your Internet Protocol (IP) address and ensures that your devices are protected from public networks via encryption.
3. Teach Children about the Tactics That Predators Use
As much as possible, have children avoid chatting with adults and strangers online. Also, help them identify hackers’ tactics and behaviors so they can avoid getting into dangerous situations. You can even invest in software that helps them identify cyberbullying tactics. Some of the tactics they should look out include receiving files labeled as gifts from hackers, requests to go private on instant messaging, and offers to switch on the camera so the predator can see what they look like.
4. Make Use of Parental Control Filters
Most browsers have parental control filters that allow you to control what your child is viewing online. You can create profiles for each child and block specific sites such as those showing porn or nudity. Other filters allow you to limit the amount of time your child can spend online. Even further, you can restrict your child’s browsing activities to sites of your choice, such as those offering educational content.
5. Teach Them How to Create Strong Passwords
Teach your kids the importance of having strong passwords. You can explain to them that the password protects them from having their information stolen or their emails and social media accounts from getting hacked. Next, teach them to create strong passwords that will help them avoid such scenarios.
While the internet has some aspects that are not appropriate for children, there is no need to ban it entirely from their lives. You can promote internet safety by talking to your child about proper usage as well as using filters to help them avoid dangerous content. Your child can use the internet as a handy educational tool.
About Glendalyn Fodra:
Glendalyn Fodra selflessly devotes all her time and efforts to caring for her patients, family, and friends. Her main goal is to help everyone around feel better and to provide a superior level of care and support. She is a devoted wife who enjoys taking care of the household and her children. She also volunteers with her youngest son’s swim meets and swim league during the summer.