The Internet can be a very scary place, especially for teenagers. Predators and bullies are hidden in every corner, and your teen can cause many problems for herself by acting inappropriately or being too trusting.
The FTC has a lot of great information regarding protecting teens from the risks that can come from browsing online. Its key piece of advice is to set clear expectations, much like any other aspect of parenting.
Your kids should know exactly what you expect them to do and not to do, and your rules need to be enforced at all times. Setting limits and only allowing access to a family computer in an open area is also a good idea, especially for younger children.
Remember to stay firm, and enforce your rules and expectations throughout their teenage years.
Teens should stay away from websites that involve chatting in a forum that is not moderated. Make sure that your teens know that everything you write on the Internet is permanent.
There is no way to completely delete something, so you must think before you post. Remind your teenagers to keep their eyes open, trust their instincts, and report anything that appears dangerous, threatening, or suspicious.
They should report anyone that asks to see pictures of them, uses inappropriate language, or expresses a serious interest in meeting up with them in person. There are laws to protect your children from predators and bullies on the Internet.
All teens love social media websites, and as a parent it is your job to ensure their safety while they are accessing these types of sites. The number one way for parents to protect their kids from the dangers that these sites pose is by joining in.
If your child has a Facebook account, then so should you. A child that tweets should also have a parent that tweets. Become your teenager’s friend or follower on these popular sites and routinely check up on them.
Make sure that they are not posting anything inappropriate or mean, and keep an eye out for anyone that may be harmful to your child. Online bullying is a serious issue with this generation, so make sure that your teenager is not being bullied or bullying any of their peers.
The best way for teens to stay safe on the Internet is by surfing the parts of the world wide web that are meant specifically for them. There are many sites geared towards teens that are safe and interesting.
Websites like these discuss topics that teens are interested in like celebrities, beauty tips, and hobbies. Suggest that your teenager takes a look at sites like My Yearbook, and Girl Sense.
These are all safe pieces of the world wide web where you can trust that your teen will be safe. Some of these sites connect teens with their peers from all over the world, and they do it in a safe and moderated environment.
There are also safe websites that tackle topics that teenagers need to be educated about in delicate ways. Teenagers can have easy access to information on birth control, relationships, and depression.
Web browsing can be an excellent source of education for teenagers, but only when it is used properly and they are in a safe environment.