Friday 30 May 2014

Just How Safe Are We On The Internet?

Technology is a part of all of ours live and the internet has become something that we just can't avoid. I spoke in an earlier post about try to live without the internet but we tend to rely on it for so much these days that it would be hard to stop using it completely.

It is strange to think that when my parents were younger there was no internet and even when I was a child the whole concept was still relatively new, I didn't actually join facebook until mid 2008. Nowadays there isn't a day that goes by that I'm not using the internet whether it be on my phone, iPad or laptop and my children already use it to play on games, research homework but just how safe are our children when left unsupervised??

I was recently given the opportunity to join a Google hangout with some fellow bloggers and David Emm, Senior Security Researcher from antivirus software provider Kaspersky Lab.
David is a parent too so has the same worries and issues as us and he offered us some great advice and top tips on just how to avoid pontential dangers online and how to make it a safer place for our children to explore.

Did you know that our children could be as little as 3 clicks away from inappropriate or adult content on when they surf the web??
I think the trouble is, is that as parents we aren't all tech savvy and we are learning at the same time that our kids are. It isn't like I can ask my mum what she thinks because she never had to deal with these types of issues when I was younger. It would be nice to have books etc to have as a point of reference. 

David pointed out a couple sites to look at :

Cyber Streetwise

I also came across some helpful online safety checklists over on NSPCC.

I'm lucky that at the moment my children are always supervised but my eldest two are getting to the age where they are wanting a bit more freedom to do things.

One thing that David suggested was making sure that you sit down and talk to your child about being safe online and this can be from a young age, you just need to make the discussion age appropriate, as they get older you can add in things. I think this is sensible advice as it will help build a certain amount of trust between parent and child as the child grows.

I believe a lot of the problems are due to lack of online common sense. 

Parental controls on computers can limit your children from doing certain things but you can't be watching them 24/7.

It is has become the norm to join sites like facebook, twitter and instagram but the trouble is, even with age restrictions, anyone can make up a date of birth!!

Not only kids but adults too forget that once something is online, it is there forever. This may seem naive to some but it doesn't make it any less true. 

Phones can give away where you are at any given time allowing for people to find you anywhere, that is a scary thought but the silly thing is i that something like that is easily preventable by simply turning the option off.

This is where talking to your child is vital, if they are made aware of who can see the photos they are sharing, what they are talking about, we as parents need to be able to put a certain amount of trust in our children that they have an understanding of how it works.

There is no quick fix to making the internet safe, there will always be new dangers out there but we as parents need to work together to share tips and knowledge to keep highlighting these issues!!



  1. Very interesting to read!!
    My kids being online scares me.....I try my best to keep them safe but I still worry x

    1. I think the trouble is that there are always new things being added to the internet so we need to be constantly learning x

  2. My so is always on the youtube watching those level crossing videos which is he currently obsessed with. I let him watch it esp now that its half term and he is sick but every video must be approved by me. Everytime he go to another video he asked me if its okay that he watch that video. Everything is so scary in the internet. Even my FB timeline is not safe from all these dirty pages. So your post is so spot on needed. Thanks for those links #pocolo

  3. Great points. This is where I am for letting your children use technology from a young age because as parents you do have more control and you can teach them things (try getting a 13 year old new to the internet to listen)


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