As we look at what the Internet has to offer, it is impossible not to see the great benefits and wealth of knowledge that it provides. This is the lure we all so often see when we consider the World Wide Web.
However, there are also things out there in that digital world that can become some very real dangers for our home base. This is in reference to bugs, viruses, pornography, and predators.
The predators are looking for innocent minds, easy targets, and free money. Therefore it is imperative that as we surf the Web, we are doing so educated and active about protecting our finances, our families, and ourselves.
There are five rules that should be implemented as a family. Here are the rules that you can use as a guideline for your family’s Internet use.
1.Never give out personal information to someone or some site that you do not know. For children and teens, they should not give out this information at all. As adults, we need to use caution with whom we give this information to. If it is to your banking institution, your utility company etc, that is a little different. However, if it is a private person, or a site you cannot verify, it is a bad idea to give that information out. Here is a list of that private information:
c.City you live
d.State you live
g.Social security number
h.Driver’s license number
i.Date of birth
j.School you go to
2.Do not post pictures of yourself or your family online to an unsecured website. This is not talking about the sites that only family and friends can view. More so, the sites that strangers can view.
3.Place the computer that is for family use in an open area: one that can be viewed easily.
4.Online friends should stay online friends. If friends are made online, it is better that they stay that way. Bringing them into the real world may not be a good idea.
5.Never download a program that you do not know what it is. This is because viruses can come in several forms. The damage that can occur is pretty severe.
It is important to talk as a family about the risks that are involved with the Internet and the use of the Internet. Talking about inappropriate contact will help make sure that you know when your child is in danger. The same applies for downloading a program on accident. The child or teen needs to know they can talk to you about it. There may be easier ways to solve the problems if you know early enough.
Monitoring what is going on with your teen or child on the Internet will help you to stay aware of what is happening in their lives. This is important. The more you know the easier it is to spot issues.
Spend time with your child or teen on the Internet. Have them show you their favorite sites so that you can help them put those sites in the favorite list. This will help to prevent them from clicking into sites that are dangerous.
In addition there are programs that scan for viruses, filter sites and information and block inappropriate information. With these tools and communicating you are better equipped to help protect your family from stranger danger online. This is what every Internet user should know.