This access does not come without risks, including:
- Not understanding privacy settings, and giving out too much personal information
- Exposure to inappropriate or pornographic material
- Being coerced by online predators
Learn the basics of Internet safety
Children use a variety of online services, and each of these services can have different safety concerns. However, there are some basic tips which you can employ no matter how your children use the Internet.
- Keep the computer in a high-traffic area of your home.
- Establish limits for which online sites children may visit and for how long.
- Remember that Internet technology can be mobile, so make sure to monitor cell phones, gaming devices, and laptops.
- Surf the Internet with your children and let them show you what they like to do online.
- Know who is connecting with your children online and set rules for social networking, instant messaging, e-mailing, online gaming, and using webcams.
- Continually dialogue with your children about online safety.
As with any safety issue, it's wise to talk with kids about concerns, take advantage of resources to protect them, and keep a close eye on their activities.