The internet has spread its wings in almost every nook and cranny of the globe. It has become easily accessible, anytime, and anywhere. The pandemic has also led to families depending on the internet to stay connected with each other. With schools remaining shut, students have resorted to depending on online classes to continue their education. Moreover, the internet is also used by kids and adults alike for myriad fun activities.
Kids now are extremely tech-savvy and comfortable with using the internet, sometimes more than their parents. This makes their digital profile an easy target for criminals. Therefore, now more than ever, we need to understand the importance of being safe online.
IT leaders can use two approaches to keep children safe online in these days of remote learning. Students and parents can be supported in their quest to stay safe online by being taught the importance of cyber hygiene. They can also be supported by setting up the infrastructure to support the learning. Moreover, online learning means the potential exposure of other family members. Students can easily view or record each other.
Age for Cybersecurity
There should be no age limit to learn the essentials of being safe online. We can easily monitor what our toddler might uses; however, it gets tough when it comes to a teenager. More screen time equals more potential exposure. It is therefore essential to teach our young ones the importance of staying safe on the internet, and the sooner we do that the better.
Before allowing our kids access to the internet, we need to sit and have a chat with them. Kids need to be aware of certain important safety guidelines. Since they are constantly exposed to new apps, games, and social media sites, we must give our kids the correct tools to navigate the net while keeping themselves safe.
One of the most important points, kids should never give out their personal information without explicit parental permission. This includes details like the last name, address, contact details, school name, or credit card number.
Kids need to be taught that a password is private. No one should know a password. If someone ever asks for a password, kids need to check with a parent first. Moreover, kids should also be taught, that if they are using a school or library computer, they need to make sure that they always sign out of all personal sites.
Most kids spend most of their time on various social media networks. A few kids might be unaware that what they post will end up permanently on the web. We need to talk to our kids about what can and cannot be shared. This is essential to protect their identity.
Another point of utmost importance, children have to be educated, that not everyone can be trusted. A person who appears to be harmless online might have a different personality in real life. Kids need to be guided about internet etiquette and warned about the dangers of interacting with a stranger.
Children need to have the confidence to stand up to bullying even on the internet. Kids need to be taught to avoid responding to insulting messages. If a child faces cyber bullying, the incident must be reported to a parent or an adult immediately. Moreover, if a child feels uncomfortable or scared about anything online, he or she needs to confide in an adult immediately.
Educating our children will keep them safe from threats. Additionally, we can also ensure our system is protected from viruses and scams. We need to remember that we do not have to scare our children as the internet is now an essential tool for education. We just need to educate and make them aware to stay safe.