Online Protection for Children
The internet is an integral part of children's lives these days. It opens up so many educational and social opportunities, giving them access to a world of information and experiences.
As you would protect your child in the real world, you will want to make sure that they are safe whatever they are doing. Like learning to cross the road, online safety skills are skills for life. If your child understands the risks and can make sensible and informed choices online, they can get the most from the internet and stay safe whilst doing so – particularly from those people who might seek them out to harm them.
So, how can you protect your child online?
The answer is simple. If you understand the internet and understand what the risks are, there are a number of things you can do that will make your child safer online...
CEOP Browser Safety Tool
Internet safety advice at your fingertips from the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre. Click on the following link to download the safety tool to your browser bar.
The following link has a 'Parents' Guide to the Internet'. From Tuesday 7th February it will include a TV-style programme available for public viewing, taking an entertaining and light-hearted look at what it’s like to bring up children in the online world – featuring practical tips and amusing clips from some surprising sources! Tune in to learn more about what your child is up to online and how you can support them: www.thinkuknow.co.uk/parents
Facebook requires individuals to be at least 13 years old before they can create an account. In some jurisdictions, the age limit may be higher. A useful link to the Parental Guide for Facebook is here: www.facebook.com/help/parents
Parental Controls at Home
Most parental control software will have a feature that blocks the internet connection after a time specified by the parent. All Windows and Mac computers now have parental controls as standard and this particular feature is available from the user settings or control panel. As well as controlling the duration of access, the parental controls can also be configured to enable internet access during specified hours only (e.g. preventing night-time access!).
As well as parental controls on the computer itself, most home broadband routers (e.g. BT Broadband) have control options to limit internet access for any or all computers in the home. You can also configure them to turn off access during certain hours (usually through the night). See the relevant instruction manual for guidance.
Both parental control methods can be found really easily by searching the web, but the following links should be helpful:
Windows Parental Control:
Mac Parental Control:
BT Broadband Router: