Keeping your kids safe online
During a recent conversation about an Internet fraud case, my girlfriend interjected, "And I don't even want to think about how we'll keep Edan [my 2 year-old daughter] safe online. Fortunately that's a long way off."
Unfortunately, however, I'm afraid we'll be faced with those decisions sooner than we realize. Edan has already shown interest in playing games online, or watching classic Sesame Street cartoons while I'm checking my email. Soon enough she'll want to be at the controls, using the computer to play by herself. Amongst all the spam for "male enhancement," Internet predators -- even unfiltered Google search results on seemingly innocuous topics -- there seems to be a mountain of content on the Internet that either isn't safe, or just isn't appropriate for kids.
CNET, an online hub for nearly anything technology related, has published a very useful "how to" guide for keeping your kids safe while they use the Internet. It not only covers topics like parental controls, but also more emerging problems like cyberbullying. Offering advice both from tech professionals and everyday parents, it's a fairly comprehensive look at what we can all be doing to make sure our kids are reaping the benefits of growing up "wired," while minimizing the pitfalls. This is a great resource for new parents trying to gain an understanding of what's out there.
Parents of older children: how do you strike this balance in your family?
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