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Category:  Children: School

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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 bay.

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 youngsters su

* 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 challenge.

* 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.  


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Category:  Children: School
Related Links:  | Children:Activities and FunChallenges | School | Parenting | Stories | Babies |

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