One of the posts I like to do from time to time is a post on keeping kids safe online. The internet is an incredible tool but it can and has done incredible damage. One of the most dangerous and most helpful characteristics of parents is they always believe the best in their kids. It’s dangerous because we overlook obvious warning signs because “our kids would never do that”. Our hearts tell us our kids would never see stuff or be pulled into stuff on-line but statistics tell us different.
Here are a few statistics about online safety and kids from enough.org
- K-1st grade students access the Internet using various devices for a variety of purposes, including playing online games and communicating with other people. Online gaming is increasingly popular among younger students. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
- 48 percent of students K-1st grade level interact with people on Web sites, while 50 percent show that their parents watch them when they use a computer, leaving the other half of those youngsters more prone to being exposed to predation behaviors or other threats posed by online strangers or even persons they know or regard as friends. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
- 48 percent of K-1st reported viewing online content that made them feel uncomfortable, of which 72 percent reported the experience to a grownup, meaning that one in four children did not. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
- 32 percent of teens clear the browser history to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
- 16 percent have created private e-mail addresses or social networking profiles to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
- 63 percent of teens said they know how to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
- 43 percent have closed or minimized the browser at the sound of a parental step. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
- 11 percent have unlocked/disabled/ parental/filtering controls. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
- 52 percent of teens have given out personal information online to someone they don’t know offline including personal photos and/or physical descriptions of themselves (24 percent). Double the number of teen girls have shared photos or physical descriptions of themselves online as boys. (34 percent girls vs. 15 percent boys) (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
You ask yourself what can I do about it? Here are 10 proven way you can keep your kids safe online.
The 10 Commandments of online safety for kids.
1. Thou shalt put the computer in a very public place
2. Remember thy password and keep it holy
3. Know thy children’s friends, buddies
4. Remember thy monitoring software and keep it active
5. Thou Shalt not allow thy children to post any graven images (photos) without thy permission
6. Thou shalt not allow any contact information to ever be given out
7. Thou shalt forbid any meeting in person with online buddies
8. Remember to check thy child’s history
9. Though shalt create a separate log in for each child (on a mac, on those other computers)
10. Thou shalt not close your eyes and hope for the best http://www.safetyweb.com/