Guest Post – Keeping the internet safe for your children

The internet presents a major dilemma for parents today. A delicate balance is required between encouraging your child out into this wide world of opportunity and protecting them from things that they should not see or that may put them in danger. Thankfully, there are many simple and effective tools available that will help support a safe environment for your kids online without hindering their chance for learning.

The most direct assistance for you in supporting your child online is from your Internet Service Provider. All of the major providers offer free, simple to use parental controls that will help to create filters for any inappropriate material, keeping your kids from being exposed to mature or malicious websites. These filters are simple to activate at any time and are now, more and more, being extended beyond simply covering your main home computer and will now included mobile devices linked to your provider as well.

Taking the time to activate and maintain these filters gives you that all-important safety net in your own home. It is difficult to be constantly watching over your kids, and granting children freedom in their activities is important for their confidence and independence. Whilst you should certainly be sure to talk with your children about their time spent on the internet, ISP parental controls will work to keep unsettling images away from you children without the need to be constantly looming over their shoulder.

Another worry about letting your kids free on the internet is the risk of viruses and other malicious programs that may get downloaded without your child realising there is a danger present. Obviously, finding an internet security service with a firewall and virus scanner should be a priority for all internet users. For parents, this further ensures your child can search the internet safely without risk to themselves or your computer.

But, undoubtedly, the most important part of keeping your child safe online is communication. Asking them about their activities, helping them with their problems and explaining to them why some things may not be safe can just as easily block as many threats to your child as internet filters. Parental controls provide excellent security, but if your child understands the possible dangers, they can learn to keep themselves out of harm’s way.