It can be challenging to manage your child’s safety online. Protecting your child from the dangers of the internet is a paramount concern for parents everywhere. While the internet can be a detriment to the physical and mental well-being of your child, it is also a necessary skill for them to learn in order to be a functional member of society when they grow up. With this in mind, we’ve provided some helpful tips to keep your child safe online and prepare them properly for potential interactions with the world around them.
Keeping smart devices, iPads, or iPhones in a public area of your home helps discourage your child from exploring the internet and its numerous rabbit holes without any guidance. By settling devices in an open area of the home, you can see when everyone is using their device and monitor your child’s screen time. Additionally, you can supervise your child’s social media profiles, ensuring they are not interacting with potential predators. Most smart devices can restrict explicit content, apps, and more. The U.S. Department of Justice recommends you pay “particular attention to apps and sites that feature end-to-end encryption, direct messaging, video chats, file uploads, and user anonymity, which are frequently relied upon by online child predators.” App restriction is a helpful tool to use as a tool to help supervise your child remotely when they log on to their device.
Communicating and setting boundaries is paramount to keeping your child safe online. Talk to your child about sharing personal information, photos, and videos as well as the implications of doing so. Teaching your child the importance of “no” and setting boundaries between your child and technology will help your child stay safe online. Encourage your child to come and talk to you if they encounter, or are subjected to, inappropriate/uncomfortable behavior when on their devices. More importantly, consider the following questions when you monitor their behaviors while browsing the web.
- Are they withdrawn?
- Trying to hide their device from you?
These could be signs that your child is experiencing abuse online. The U.S. Department of Justice states that you should absolutely not delay in “report[ing] suspected online enticement or sexual exploitation of a child by calling 911, contacting the FBI, or filing a report with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) at 1-800-843-5678.” Providing a supportive and open environment for your child will only further serve to help your child practice safety precautions online, and come to you for safety if they encounter harrowing or potentially harmful situations.
How Angel Watch Can Help
Angel Watch is a 4G smartwatch for kids that enables calling, texting, and video calling with parent-approved contacts all without the need for internet or social media access. Angel Watch can be a great way to limit your child’s screen time and internet use. Equipping your child with Angel Watch’s kid-friendly cell phone watch allows them to contact trusted friends and family, maintaining their social connections without the other dangers of online communication.