What Internet Safety for Teens EntailsYour Internet safety lesson starts with understanding that your teenager will not always like your actions. Their resulting attitude or displeasure with the decisions you make should not deter you from the task at hand. Now is not the time to be their friend or work to make them happy. Your primary focus needs to be keeping them safe online. That starts by understanding the functionality of the Internet.
Know Your Teen’s ContactsCommunication is a vital part of your teen’s online activities. Being online gives them access to instant messaging and live stream video features that let them talk to anyone following their social media accounts. They can use an email account or the text messaging service on their phone to send written messages, photos or videos to individuals on their contacts list. You need to know who is on your teenager’s contact lists. Enforce this with a rule stating they can only add people to their list that they associate with in real life, or that they can only add people with your prior approval.
Web Browser SafetyWeb browsers such as Edge, Chrome, and Safari give your teen access to the Internet. They will use that access to watch videos, listen to music, read celebrity gossip or check their social media accounts. Search engines like Google and Bing make a seemingly endless stream of information available in a matter of seconds. Enabling the parental control settings on your teen’s web browser gives you the ability to block any websites or information that you find unacceptable.
Social Media and Your TeenNow that you know where they’re going online and who they may be chatting with, turn your focus to their social media activity. Being a teenager and using social media go hand in hand, almost like a rite of passage. Social media serves as a communication lifeline for teens as it keeps them in constant contact with friends.
irritability and impulsivity.
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Your Role in Internet SafetyThe best internet safety tips for teens begins with you. Share your concerns with them and allow them to have a say in creating Internet usage rules. Keep the line of communication open so that your teen knows they can come to you the moment something online makes them uncomfortable. When that happens, refrain from judgment by focusing on creating a viable solution to the problem at hand. You also need to create a set of non-negotiable rules. Inform your teen that they are never to share personal information online or in their social media accounts. Frequently check the browser history on their phone or other devices that access the Internet. Maintain access to all of their online accounts – social media included — and check these periodically to ensure they remain safe. Set a parental control on each of their devices that prevent them from downloading apps or making online purchases without your approval. You are going to face daily battles with your teenager. Some are negotiable. Their Internet use is not one of those things. Set guidelines, stand firm against misuse or cyberbullying, and take action the minute you suspect something may be wrong. References:
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