Internet safety, privacy issues, cyberbullying are but some of the major concerns of today's parents. It is true that the web revolution has positively affected many facets of our life, yet its downsides are equally devastating. We are in front of a double edged weapon that requires meticulous attention when using it.
It is impossible to imagine a house without internet connection. The web has crawled into our social texture to the point that we become dependant on its use in our daily life. Besides sending and reading emails, chat and socialising which are basic tasks users would constantly perform, some people are using it now for e-commerce to buy and shop online, to read ebooks, to run businesses but regardless of the reasons why we have internet at home we should always pay heed to who shares with us this connection especially when it comes to kids.
Kids when unmonitored can have free access to the net and surf in dangerous places , meet strange people and even learn new bad things we never thought they would. And because of their immaturity, innocence and predisposition to easily trust others, . children are the most vulnerable category to cyber bullying and in many cases abuse. Do parents know about these alarming facts ? Of course the majority ,if not all of them know, but the thing is that they feel helpless and lack the necessary education on the preventive measures they need in order to seamlessly monitor what their kids do online. This ignorance, shortage of insight or call it whatever you want is no longer excused. Parents need to seriuosly address this issue and to help them do so, I have laboriously worked on several resources to compile a list of some of the tools that parents need to be equipped with to face this looming danger that threatens our kids safety.You do not need to be a technology geek or have advanced computer skills to be able to use these web applications. They are mundanely easy and can be used by anyone with the basic internet skills which all of you possess since you are here reading this post.
Creepsquash is a web based monitoring tool that allows you to seamlessly monitor your kids Facebook activity without invading their privacy. Here is a short video to show you how to do it
MinorMonitor is another web application that helps in monitoring kids activity on Facebook. It can :
Provide you with your kids' details such as status updates, friend lists , photos, and checked in places
Automatically analyzes and identifies possible bullying, drug use, sexual references, solicitation, profanity and more.
Watch this video to learn more
Yahoo Safely is the official Yahoo security tips website. It provides Internet safety tips for both parents and teenagers. It contains sections designed specifically for parents and kids to teach them how to use the internet carefully and responsibly.
Family Safety Centre
Family Safety Centre is a portal made by Google where it aggregates a huge number of Internet security tips, videos and articles. Besides the tools offered by Google services, users can also watch videos made by other parents on how kids can use the internet safely. Family Safety Centre also provides ways for parents on how to report abuse or inappropriate content on its services.
NetSmartz is a great website that educates its users on Internet Safety for kids. It addresses parents, teachers, teens, educatos, law enforcement . This is what it says about parents :
Wired Safely is another fantastic website that teaches about online kids safety. It covers topics such as: cyberbulling, cyberstalking,cyber crimes, online harassement , identity theft, email safety, malware and adware, phishing, downloading music safely and online gaming safety.
SafeKids is much more of a blog than a website. It covers internet safety for kids and has several articles all of which tackle the issue of kids surfing the net safely.
Cybersmart provides activities, resources and practical advice to help teens, kids and parents safely use the internet. It also offers training and resources for schools and materials for library staff.
Solos is another website that offfers education on internet safety for kids and parents.