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Internet Safety For Beginners: Are Your Kids Protected?

internet safety tips is your child protected?

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As I scrolled the internet I saw a familiar image.  A picture of the internet game Roblox, a game my 7-year-old son loves to play.  Instead of seeing how popular the game was I saw this headline:

Horrified dad found sick messages from paedo predator in his eight-year old son’s Roblox iPad game

Immediately my heart sank and I gasped for air.  What the hell was I allowing my child to play?  My child’s safety on the internet was paramount.  Although this article is from the UK, the internet doesn’t recognize geographical boundaries.  That is why the internet is amazing and scary (especially for parents) at the same time.  I am here to give some timely advice on internet safety for beginners.  As parents, we are beginners compared to most people.  My son is 7 years old and can navigate the mouse like Stephen Curry can dribble a ball.  Let’s get started.

Watch my video about internet safety now:

 

If you that don’t know about Roblox it is an internet game.  When you arrive at the website you can choose from a variety of games to play:

 

internet safety for beginners

 

After choosing your game by clicking on the icon, you then enter the game’s corresponding chat room and portal to play.  You then move your character around the board and can chat with other characters as you play.  According to the article, pedophiles are trolling these games in search of their victims.  They also talk in code.

I have watched my son play this game many times and I haven’t noticed this type of behavior.  I’m sure it is out there though.

So what would you do if your child was being “groomed” by one of these sickos on the internet?  You could be like me and stand over your kid’s shoulder when he plays to prevent it.  Obviously, this uses up a lot of precious time as I’m pretty sure having your child occupied by a game may be the only time you can get dinner cooked or a quick shower.

Here are some tips you can institute to protect your child’s safety on the internet. Since this is an internet safety for beginners article I have also created a free checklist to start you out on securing your digital devices, “Protecting Your Child On The Internet Checklist.”

internet safety for beginners

Internet Safety For Beginners

Set Up Parental Controls On Your Computer

Setting up parental controls on your computer, smart TV,  and the phone is a great place to start.  I dove into parental controls to protect my son when he first started using the internet.  I had just purchased a Mac and dove in learning all about the features that were available.   Here are some of the features that a Mac (I’m sure a PC as well) offers and that you should set up on your computer to protect and restrict your kid’s access on the internet ( you can do this on both a desktop or laptop):

  • Restrict access to app downloads by age appropriateness.
  • Limit access to websites.
  • Restrict contact with other people through games, messages, and mail.
  • Set time limits.  You can even specify times based on weekdays, weekends and bedtime.
  • Hide profanity in the dictionary and other places.
  • Block access to the camera.
  • Block access to changing the password.

Are you lost on where to find this information?  I want to save you the time and aggravation of learning how to set up parental controls on your computer.  As a result, I have added directions on how to set up these options on your Mac step by step.  You can find this and more helpful actions you can take to safeguard your child with the Protecting Your Kids On The Internet Checklist.

Get Your Checklist

I also wanted to tell you about some child-safe sites that I use.  These sites that are for kids age 4 to 8.  They are all internet sites but are also available as an app for your smartphone.

Child Safe Internet Sites:

Moreover, here is a quick tip for kids who are older than 10.  After your child is done using the computer check your site’s internet browsing history.  You can do this by going to the history tab at the top of your internet browser or sidebar.  This will show you the pages your child has visited.  Yes, you should snoop on your child.  Being aware of where they are hanging out is a way to protect them.  Moms are great detectives when they have to be!

Don’t forget to download a copy of Protecting Your Kids On The Internet Checklist to stay on top of your kid’s internet protection and set up your computer’s parental controls.

Get Your Checklist

Do you have internet safety tips that you can share? 

Leave a comment below with your tip and let’s all help each other keep our kids’ safe.

 

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