Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I is for Internet [Safety]

At some point in your child's young life you have to talk about strangers. This is, hopefully, not a one time deal. They need to be aware of what to do in various scenarios/situations. Amongst many things, they have to be taught that appearances can be deceiving. This brings me to this topic, internet safety.

This is something that parents need to be greatly involved in--for their safety and the safety of their children. Here are a couple of quizzes for you to take, for starters:



Maybe you are really smart and knew all the answers. Good for you--but you still need to be careful. Some quick thoughts on basic internet safety:

1. Keep all computers in high traffic areas--not bedrooms. This is kind of a challenge with wi-fi and all sorts of wireless handhelds available. Maybe opt to not have wireless devices.

2. Purchase and use internet filter software. Check out some comparisons and buy the one that best suits your needs:



There are so many wonderful features with the filters--many of them allow you to set up how sensitive you want alerts and filters to be--many, many options--it's awesome.

3. Be in the room when your a family member has to use the internet. Instruct them to never download anything from unknown or questionable sources, never give out ANY personal information, discourage chat rooms, bookmark sites so as not to have to search for them, not to use free peer-to-peer or chat-based programs to download material, and to use credible search engines.

4. Teach family members to have the courage to turn things off, as there are always ways to bypass filtering or sometimes something sneaks past the filter. By definition, pornography is any visual or written medium created with the intent to sexually stimulate. Teach yourself and family members, "If it turns you on--turn it off--IMMEDIATELY!" An educated man once noted that all males are addicted to pornography without even having to view it. Yes, males are very visual, but female viewing of pornography is also on the rise. The following link lists some alarming statistics: http://internet-filter-review.toptenreviews.com/internet-pornography-statistics.html

5. Finally, practice these tips yourself!! While blogs are all the rage consider making yours password-protected. I've seen some blogs where people list their addresses and schools that their children attend--not a safe move, parents! (Even pictures of your child in front of their school are unwise). If you do not wish to make your blog private than at least refer to your family members by made-up names, "Handsome hubby," "Princess #1," "Superkid," etc....

My intention is not to scare you, but to help you protect your family. It's up to you!


M-Z-T said...


This is a cute video (done by BYU) on internet safety. Plus, the website is actually a really good resource.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tips and for starting this blog.

Here are some other ideas:

There are a lot of misconceptions out there about Internet dangers, especially in the area of predators. As parents we don't want to be fighting the wrong battle. Check out: http://www.covenanteyes.com/blog/2008/10/02/experts-speak-about-internet-predators/

2. Have you heard of accountability software? It is a great way to not only monitor where your kids go online, but also be model to your own children in the area of Internet use: http://www.covenanteyes.com/blog/2008/06/12/is-filtering-all-there-is-introducing-accountability-software/