Protecting your child against harmful online content

Technology is now as ubiquitous as the air we breathe. Everybody, including our young, innocent and impressionable children are using technology of one form or another. While technology is indisputably a good thing, having positively transformed our lives beyond imagination, innovations unfortunately come with their fair share of disadvantages.

One dark side of technology is the amount of toxic content the children are exposed to. This presents a monumental challenge to parents and guardians on how to ensure that the children only access content that will help them grow into responsible people.

Parents thus find themselves at the crossroads, weighing the pros and cons of giving their children digital freedom and defining the boundaries of that freedom.

Most parents understand that limiting children’s access to the internet could hinder their ability to learn and develop. But this also means exposing children to online threats and bad content.

When well utilised, your child is able to access online tutors and learning materials that can help them a great deal in their education journey.

Aside from obtaining negative content that may hinder their development, children may also unwittingly expose their families and loved ones to cyber-attacks. They can, for instance, download albeit by chance, malware that could give cyber criminals access to their parents’ bank account or other sensitive information.

Given these vulnerabilities associated with children’s usage of the internet, protecting children on the internet becomes an urgent matter that parents and guardians ought to take urgently and seriously.

How then can parents ward off with these dangers?

First they need to be aware of the threats that lurk in the cyber world, and how to safeguard against them. 

To tackle all these threats and fears, Kaspersky, a global cyber security and digital company advises parents to install robust security softwares that have parental controls on all devices. This way, they will be able to monitor what their children consume online.

There are several hardware solutions that a parent can deploy to help them block unwanted web content, limit screen time, restrict the use of risky applications and access unwanted materials both on television and online platforms.

Experts advise parents to take the bull by the horns and explain to young people the consequences of cyberbullying, owning and distributing pornographic material, and other unethical internet behaviour.

Devices such as Kaspersky Safe Kids, Qustodio, Mobicip, Circle Home Plus, Locategy and Norton Family help you monitor your child.

Having parental controls software installed on all your internet-connected devices is a great way to help regulate your children’s online habits.

Consider investing in a good security suite and teach your kids the importance of safety when exploring the online world.

Parental controls apps can help you monitor emails, social media profiles, texts, and other mobile functions.

These help when you’re especially concerned about problematic conversations or activities. For example, some apps notify you when it detects certain words such as “drugs.”

It is also advisable to let your kids know when you’re monitoring their devices, especially since you’ll need your kid’s account information, including passwords, for some of the features.

Parental controls can block certain features of games your kids can access, let you to set up user profiles where your kids can only access certain features or allow you to monitor what they’re doing while using the game, allow you to track your kids’ location, help establish good cyber safety habits and also help defend online reputation.

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