Parents Are Responsible for Their Child’s Internet Safety

Oct 23, 2014

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There are 3 million apps available-ranging from educational to entertaining. Although many of the apps weren’t created with malicious intent, users’ habits have turned harmless apps into harmful ones.

Some of the dangers posed by mobile apps include: sexting, cyberbullying, grooming (where a stranger builds a trusting relationship and connection with a younger person with the intention of sexually abusing them), and sharing current location with strangers.

Parents often automatically blame technology and the Internet when their child has been a victim to these dangers; however, poor monitoring and protection is to blame. One out of 10 parents with a child between the ages of five and 11 admits that they have never checked which apps their child is using.  Additionally, 29% of parents with children that are in primary school do not require their children to ask for permission before downloading new apps.

There are many resources available for parents who want to learn more about mobile apps and monitoring software.

Internet Matters is a child safety organization based in the UK. They recently created a new section on their website dedicated to giving parents information about mobile apps. Visit http://www.internetmatters.org/technologies/apps.html for more information.

Net Nanny provides information about internet safety as well as monitoring software. If your child owns an Android, use Net Nanny for Android; by using the App Management feature, administrators can remotely view, or allow the installed or newly installed apps (inappropriate or not) from the device. 

Start protecting your family NOW by applying these few tips:

-Do not give account or device passwords to your child

-Check privacy settings.  Apple has also embedded iOS Restrictions for apps. Under “Restrictions” in your settings, the administrator has the ability to change apps settings and increase level of parental control.

-Disallow in-app purchases on your iOS devices (also in “Restrictions” section)

-Check Apps before your child downloads; have he/she answer why they want the app  so they can learn to consider what they are purchasing

Not all apps are bad. Make your child’s experience safer and more secure by monitoring the apps they are using.

Source: http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2014/09/12/parents-should-check-app-downloads