As the internet has grown and expanded over the last few decades, it is now a portal for anything you want to buy, see or find. While this remains a major accomplishment of humankind, the ability to access anything may pose a problem for children surfing the web unattended.
It has become such a big part of our lives and is now ingrained in our children’s lives and their education. They need to use the internet to complete homework and connect with friends. As they get older, they will need and request more freedom while browsing the internet.
Children may also hear things at school that they want to look up, and images of violence and adult content are within a few clicks. Even without explicitly looking for these things, pop-up adverts and dodgy websites are everywhere, attempting to lure people onto their website.
There is also the danger of exploitation from online scamming websites. This is big business for many criminals who will trick children into sending them money with the promise of something in return.
While this is a scary thought, there are things you can use and do to ensure your children stay safe while they browse the internet.
Antivirus software can be a big help in blocking unwanted content, software and insidious websites automatically, leaving you relaxed while letting your children free on the internet. Children can be a little bit naive, which adds to their childlike wonder, but can also expose them to scams and strangers online.
Antivirus software uses sophisticated tools to monitor your child’s internet usage and detect when something is not right. Whether this is by blocking a website it thinks is suspicious, or blocking a download of a virus or malware. It should be noted that antivirus software isn’t foolproof, with hackers and scammers constantly trying to bypass it.
Many of the top antivirus software, such as Norton and McAfee, have built-in parental controls. These controls allow you to control what your child does online. The antivirus software will still do its part, but these tools allow you to be specific in blocking certain social networks or blocking searches and websites which include certain words.
Another benefit of this is being able to have different settings for different children. This would come in handy if you have different aged children and want to allow certain suitable content for the older child but not the younger.
Talk to Them
While antivirus software has a great track record of making the internet a safe place for children to explore, it is always a good idea to talk to them to understand what they are working on or what they are curious about. In this stage of their lives, they are learning a lot of things and are sure to be curious. Simply talking to them might prompt them to ask about a contentious subject that they would otherwise search for on their own. Being open and honest with them will encourage them to do the same and not try to be secretive about their internet antics.
Remind Them of the Rules
It is a good idea to remind your child of the key ground rules when browsing the internet. Remember, antivirus software isn’t perfect, so adding an extra step to keep them away from certain content can’t do any harm. Teach them what to look out for when encountering a website that doesn’t look right, and definitely teach them not to talk to strangers or give away any personal information.
The internet can be a nasty place filled with adult content and scammers that children shouldn’t be interacting with. Antivirus software is an absolute must when you have children using the internet daily. At fairly affordable prices, this simple software will give you the peace of mind that your child is being looked after online. The added parental controls allow you to block certain content, which is useful if you want your child to stay away from social media or distracting online games.