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Responsible internet surfing - what you should teach your child about it

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Responsible internet surfing - what you should teach your child about it

Children use the internet for various purposes like education, gathering information, making friends and entertainment. There are many dangers such as cyberbullying, child predators, scams, and identity theft lurking on the internet. This does not mean children should stop using the Internet. Spy phone apps can be a good method of monitoring internet use by children. Along with the apps, you should spend some time to teach them responsible internet use.

• Gather information.
Keep yourself updated about the latest antivirus software. Know the latest news and alerts on internet safety.

• Monitoring the devices.
Install the computer in a common area of the house where you can keep an eye on children when they are using them. Monitor the time spent by them on their smartphones.

• Set some basic rules.
Before your kids begin using the internet have a frank discussion about safe online behavior. Tell them about the dangers present in the online world. Teach them how to use antivirus software.

Remind them anything which is posted on the internet remains there for a lifetime. University admission offices and their future employers may verify their social media profiles. Tell them about the harmful effects of downloading apps from unverified sites.

• Join them when they surf the internet.
Sit with your kids when they start using the internet. Keep an eye on the social media sites your kids are using. Join them on these sites. Direct them to family-based sites.

• Use Internet tools.
Most internet service providers give you parent control options to monitor your child's internet use. There are child-friendly search engines and software which block unwanted material. Supervise your child's browsing history to know the sites they have been visiting.

• Set up strong passwords
Assist your children to develop strong passwords with a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters. Each member of the family should have their own user accounts. Parents should keep the administrator rights with them.

• No personal information.
Tell your child not to publish any personal information online. Make it clear to them that sharing their location and personal information like school or home address can make them vulnerable to child predators.

• Keep the lines of communication open.
Even after all precautions are taken children can come across harmful content on the Internet. Instruct them to approach you if they come across any disturbing material or sites online.