June is internet safety month. The internet is a place where most of us, including our children, spend a lot of time.
You should talk to your kids about their online activities and consider taking more action to protect them. In today's digital world, children are more exposed than ever. One study shows more than half have had private conversations with strangers on social media or while playing online games.
"Parents must be the first line of defense in protecting their kids from all kinds of dangers online, whether that is online predators or cyberbullying," said J. Berkshire, Windstream in Georgia.
Some of those safety rules should include monitoring your children's use of the internet. Keep your computer in an open room. Check your kids' profiles and what they post. Ask them about who they communicate with. Make it a rule that they can never meet anyone in person without your knowledge or consent. Talk to them about sexual predators and potential online dangers. Tell them why it's so important not to disclose personal information online. You should also use parental controls.
"It must be implemented on all internet-enabled devices including laptops, tablets, smartphones, and any gaming device," Berkshire said.
J. Berkshire is president of Windstream in Georgia, which offers a monitoring feature with its internet service.
"It lets the parents know where the kids are going or attempting to go and for how long. It also monitors incoming mail and messages. Many of these monitoring tools can send the parents a report card and an alarm if the kids are going into dangerous territory online," he said.
Berkshire also calls age-appropriate filters critical. Those can block out inappropriate websites and pictures that children shouldn't be seeing.
If you want more information about how to use a monitoring feature, you should contact your local internet provider.
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