Children's Online Safety Rules For Parents
By John , The Computer Guy
The Internet has rapidly become both a blessing and a curse in
most homes where computers and children are present. Navigating
this brave new world and doing so in a manner that ensures
children's online safety isn't always easy. Setting the online
safety rules and making sure they are enforced falls on a
parent's shoulders. This is a vital step, however, to make sure
the Net is used or abused and that predators are kept well at
Before even plugging in a computer and jacking into the Internet,
parents very likely should sit down and decide on their own
preferences for online safety rules. What is acceptable and
unacceptable in any given home falls to the parents to decide for
themselves. The online safety rules set, however, should be clear
and they should be enforced by a parent's watchful eye.
Some of the most common online safety rules parents set to make
sure their children and personal information stays safe while
* Banning personal information sharing. This very likely should
be at the top of any online safety rules list. It is very
difficult to tell who is on the other end of the computer screen.
While a child might be in a math homework chat room for
fifth-graders, there is no way to tell if another "child" is
really that or if it happens to be a 30-year-old pedophile
fishing for information. With this in mind, it is imperative that
children be instructed to never give out personal information.
This includes their real names, telephone numbers, school name,
home address, parents' names and so on. This can be hard to
enforce, but if the second recommendation on the online safety
rules list is followed, it might not present too much of a
* Supervised online use only. It is one thing to go over online
safety rules with children, it is another to make sure you know
exactly what they are looking at and when. It might not be
necessary to stand over them the entire time they are using the
computer, but periodic check ins are always advised. Many parents
restrict their children from using the Internet unless they are
home and able to supervise.
* Set e-mail use rules. One of the best online safety rules a
parent can set and help enforce is the limiting of e-mail usage.
Parents can help keep inappropriate materials away from their
children by turning on spam filters and by strongly laying down
the law that e-mail sent from unknown sources should never be
answered or acted on.
* Ratings settings use required. Some parents set this as part
of their online safety rules to make sure children cannot access
inappropriate web sites. The ability to set allowed site ratings
for a user to access will vary from Internet Service Provider to
Internet Service Provider.
* Other online safety rules. There are some other rules parents
sometimes consider. These include usage times allowed, usage type
allowed and even length of visit restrictions.
The Internet is a wonderful learning and communication resource,
unfortunately is has also become the playground for some very bad
people. To keep children safe, parents often have to set online
safety rules. These rules must be shared and enforced to be
effective. Nothing replaces parental supervision when it comes to
keeping children safe online or otherwise.
Written By: John The Computer Guy
Recently I have started a parental community where parents
can get together and discuss their children's online safety.
Together we can make it a safer world for our children to grow
up in. http://parentalcommunity.com