Social Media and family are a great combination, but safety must be thought of first. You must take precautions to keep family safe on the internet.
There are simple and effective steps you can take to enjoy social media and family.
Practice Safe Sharing on social media to keep your family safe
Social media and family can be a benefit. It is a great way to share news and pictures with family and friends. Even if your social media pages are private, you should think twice before announcing any upcoming vacations or time you are going to be away from home. Avoid posting personal information to keep family safe on the internet. The key is to keep social media and family plans separate.
Safety must be considered when sharing pictures and the names of family members. It is important to remember that tagging someone in a photo can make the photo available to others also.
Be Aware of the Ways Social Media is Accessed
The internet is no longer only accessed at home or school. Tablets, smart phones and free wi-fi make connecting to the internet quick and easy for children. Take precautions by controlling the settings on these devices to prevent internet access.
Be Aware of Downloaded Apps and the Information Being Collected and Shared
Many apps collect and share data that you are not aware of. To keep family safe on the internet, try out apps yourself to be sure the content is age appropriate and check if the app connects to other social media pages like Facebook. Consider restricting the ability to download apps.
Talk With Your Kids About Cyber Bullying and Sexting
Cyber bullying is using the internet to harm someone. It is deliberate, repeated and hostile. The goal of cyber bullying is to hurt the other person by putting them down, intimidating or controlling them.
Talk to your kids about cyber bullying. Tell them not to respond and to report any bullying posts to you. Take cyber bullying attacks seriously. Children are often very emotionally affected by this. If you or a family member is a victim of cyber bullying, contact the police or WiredSafety.org for help.
Sexting is increasingly becoming a problem with children and the internet. Sexting is sending sexually explicit photos through the internet. Talk with your children about sexting. Explain to them that the internet is forever and whatever they send out is permanent. It can not be erased an can be easily shared.
Take the time to set the parental controls on computers and devices that can connect to the internet. Parents can control privacy, sharing and inappropriate content. You can also download software that captures keystrokes and allows you to see what your child is doing online. Stay in charge of your children's internet usage to keep family safe on the internet.
Some of the ways that you can integrate parental controls into internet access:
- Check with your internet provider to see if they have a way of implementing parental control.
- Check out with your preferred browser software to see if they have built-in parental control setting.
- Install parental control apps on your child(ren) cell phones.
- Monitor your child(ren) online friends to make sure that they are age appropriate.
- Keep an eye on your the activity surround your child(ren) to make sure they aren't being bullied.