It’s fun to hang out on the Internet but it also requires some attention. While there are lots of benefits to using the Internet there are some dangers as well. Misuse of the Internet can hurt or even destroy your computer, it can put your family at risk financially, and it can but you in harm’s way. Below is a list of five things you should never do on the Internet. By following these five things and by learning as much as you can about Internet safety, you will not be putting your computer, your family, or yourself at risk.
1. Don’t open email attachments or click on files if you don’t know exactly what they are. Viruses are like computer diseases and they can kill your computer. These viruses get in your computer a couple of ways. One way is as an email attachment. Ask your parents before opening any attachments. Also, be careful what you click on. You should always ask your parents before clicking on any button that says “download” or “submit”. You can click on “download” and download a virus right onto the computer. Submit sends your computers information the other way.
2. Don’t type personal information into Internet forms. Sometimes you might want to enter a contest and it may ask you for your name and address and stuff. Before you type any information about yourself, you need to ask your parents. This is a way for bad guys to find out where you live and other important information. Information about your family might let one of the bad guys open accounts in your parent’s name or buy stuff with their money. Definitely never type in credit card information. Let your parents handle business on the Internet. You should just use it to learn and to have fun.
3. Do not post any pictures of yourself on the Internet. If your parents want to post pictures for you that’s fine but let them be in charge of all posting. Hopefully they will post in a way that makes a person have a password to see the pictures. It is fun to see yourself on the Internet but having a picture on the Internet also puts you at risk for all sorts of bad stuff. If your parents do have your pictures on a password protected site, don’t give your password to anybody.
4. Do not chat online. If you do chat online, do not ever go into a private room to chat. Anybody who suggests that you talk in private is putting you at risk. You should tell a parent or a teacher immediately. One of the number one ways that people hurt kids with the Internet is to gain their trust through talking. You should not be talking about anything personal with anybody online. If a person online wants you to talk about yourself or wants you to post a picture do not trust that person and tell a parent immediately.
5. This rule is such no brainer I don’t even think I should have to write it, but here goesâ€¦don’t ever, under any circumstance go to meet a person that you meet online. This also means don’t ever tell an online “friend” where you are going to be. You might think it is innocent to say you are walking to the store after school gets out. But the bad guy on the other computer, pretending to be your friend might consider this an invitation to meet you. You should guard your identity, your privacy, and your location the whole time you are online.