Back to school already! This means all new friendships, new events, and new places, which makes it all the more important for parents to be aware of what is going on with their child’s social life both online and offline.
According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry reports up to half of all children are bullied at some point during their school years. Here are 10 tips from Brad Miller, CEO of Awareness Technologies, for parents to help protect their children from cyberbullies and other online dangers:
1. Start by talking with your children about their online activities and the dangers of cyberbullying – set their expectations by discussing your views on monitoring their Internet and smartphone use.
2. Set up Google Alerts to monitor mentions of your children’s names on the web.
3. Friend your children on Facebook and monitor their privacy settings so you are able to view their profile and activity.
4. In addition to Facebook, cyberbullies use other social networking sites like Twitter to post hateful messages. Familiarize yourself with these sites and set up an account to enable you to routinely search what others are saying about your kids.
5. Inform teachers if you suspect your child is being cyberbullied. Teachers are among the first to notice important changes in children’s behavior, and it’s possible the bully may be a classmate.
6. Consider implementing parental monitoring software on your home computers and children’s smartphones.
7. Many school districts also now use computer monitoring software on all classroom computers. Check with your school principal, PTA or school board to ensure these tools are in use at your child’s school.
8. Prohibit your children from having multiple e-mail addresses, screen names and social networking accounts.
9. Prohibit your children from using geolocation tools and apps on Facebook and smartphones.
10. Always be observant as your children use electronic communications tools. Changes in habits, such as frequency and timing of use, mood swings and other indicators, could be a sign that your child is being bullied or a target of other online mischief.
Each tip above is very useful and important in and of itself; however, a better practice for parents would be to guarantee safe internet habits with parental monitoring software like WebWatcher. This computer monitoring software ensures that cyberbullying on your child’s PC is a non-issue.
on Friday, August 26th, 2011 at 7:39 pm and is filed under Computer Monitoring, How-Tos, Internet Safety, Parental Control.
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