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Internet Safety

Get Informed - Internet Safety

Internet Safety

Risks of Internet use by adolescents are an intensification of risks of media and society at large, but they come in forms that adults may not be familiar with and did not experience when they were growing up. When using the internet today, teens may come across material that is inappropriate and disturbing, including sexual, violent, drug-promoting, or otherwise offensive images and messages.

Some experts say that about 42% of kids report being bullied online, so it is important for parents to teach their children about internet safety. While chat rooms are considered to be the most dangerous, social networking platforms can also provide a perfect opportunity for attackers to find their victims, leveraging what users assume to be a “safe” environment. Attackers employ various techniques to build up their follower list, including poisoning trendy topic threads, or initiating other campaigns which can increase the visibility of their tweets, and therefore draw users into suspicious sites, malicious downloads or other malevolent activity.

Get Informed - Internet Safety

What can you do as a Parent to Keep your Teen Safe?

  • Discuss the possible dangers of internet use with your children and adolescents.  TEACH THEM THAT SEXTING IS A FELONY in most states and can provoke an arrest or cause their name to be registered on a sex offender registry.
  • Limit screen time to 2 hours a day and place the family computer in a common area, not in an individual bedroom, you can keep an eye on both the computer and your child.
  • Encourage your teen to remaining anonymous at all times (this includes chat rooms, which are unmonitored places on the Internet where users can exchange instant messages in real time).
  • Teach children never to disclose private information, such as her address, phone number, school name, and/or credit card numbers.
  • Teach children to Never agree to meet someone they met only on the internet.
  • Review young people’s profiles on social networking web sites and their instant messaging “buddy lists.”
  • Use Internet safeguard functions (software or services that filter or block inappropriate web sites, e-mail, and other materials).
Get Informed - Internet Safety

Parental controls and filtering software also can help you protect your daughter from online predators and inappropriate adult content.   It is also very important to talk to her about the dangers of interacting with strangers online and remind her that people online often don’t tell the truth.  Also make her aware that while some online solicitation is from friends and acquaintances, often it can be from people unknown to you and that this can come with a great deal of online harassment. Discuss with your teen how to handle these particular situations in a constructive manner.

If and when your teen admits to receipt of unwanted internet material, use the admission as a forum to talk about internet safety.

It may also be necessary for some parents to monitor the use of the internet of their teen. Multiple sites help parents monitor internet use. One online resource for answering questions about Internet safety, computers, and the Web is at http://www.netsmartz411.org/.

Also the FBI offers a guide to help adults understand the complexities of online child exploitation at http://www.fbi.gov/stats-services/publications/parent-guide/parent-guide.

Useful Websites

http://kidshealth.org

http://www.safekids.com 

Enough is Enough

 

 

 

Information Last updated 9/11/14

Disclaimer: All health information on Girlsmarts.org is for informational purposes only. The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking this because of something you have read on the Girlsmarts.org website. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.