Are Kids Safe Online…

kids safe online, greenwichmums

Are Kids Safe Online? -This morning we all awoke to the news that Snapchat’s users have had their personal photos and videos intercepted online.

In a statement, Snapchat said that: “We can confirm that Snapchat’s servers were never breached and were not the source of these leaks. Snapchatters were victimised by their use of third-party apps to send and receive Snaps, a practice that we explicitly prohibit in our terms of use precisely because they compromise our users’ security.” Apparently by the same people who were behind the posting of nude celebrity photos in August.

So how do we keep our kids safe online?

Ofcom research from 2012 has shown that 91% of 5-15-year-olds live in a household with Internet access and over a third of all 3-4-year-olds are now accessing the internet too. Depending on the age that your children are now, they may not have yet discovered smartphones, tablets or computers, unless it’s just pressing the buttons! Alternatively, they may already be used to using trusted websites or – if they’re older – using social networking sites. Our children need support in these environments, to get the best out of using the internet, making sure that they are supported in their internet use right from the start.

Here are a few tips from Gmums in Keeping Kids safe online

Make sure devices like your mobile, tablet or laptop are out of reach. Set up passwords/PINs and make sure only you know the details.

If you have a family computer or tablet, set the homepage to a website such as Cbeebies or Disney

When using public WiFi – remember that it might not include any parental controls. Letting your child play with your mobile or tablet while you’re enjoying a coffee may result in them accessing inappropriate content or revealing personal information about you!

Set those boundaries, even at this early age … it’s never too early to do things like setting limits for the amount of time they can spend on devices and the computers.

Buy or download parental control software, switch it on and keep it updated. There are lots on the market, which work in different ways and range in prices, many are free.

On your computers and any other devices, your child has access to, set the parental controls to the appropriate age, and enabling access to only appropriate content.

The big Internet Service Providers (ISPs) give their customers free parental controls which can be activated at any time. Check them out and take advantage of them.

Buy or download only apps, games, online TV and films that have age ratings, which you should check before allowing your child to play with or watch them. common sense but worth stating again!

Lastly, share your technology rules with grandparents, babysitters and your child’s friends’ parents so that they know what to do when looking after your child. This will reinforce your message.