By: Fatima Salahuddin
Keeping track of your children’s activities online could seem intrusive, but many of them will change their online behavior if they’re aware that their parents are watching them. Sometimes your child may even go off the hook towards you, expressing all manner of dissatisfaction for the encroachment. In the digital age of today, children may be vulnerable to sexual predators online, in addition to cyberbullying and dangerous online challenges that also target kids. As a parent, if you’re going to give your child an electronic gadget to give him or her access to the internet, then their digital persona should become your priority. What are some of the ways to keep track of your child’s online life though? Scroll down and find out!
Use the app they’re using
If you really want to take this matter seriously, then you have to make sure you are on the same app they’re using. This will be the best way to know what the app is all about, and what kind of content your child is exposed to. A proper appraisal of what the app offers will let you know if it will pose a danger to your child or not. Apart from signing up to the same online platforms your children are on, try to connect with them on the platform and make sure they’re not running two accounts that you’re not aware of. Some children usually find a way to keep their parents off their real pages using decoy pages. If you suspect that, then maybe it is better to ground them on such apps. It is better safe than sorry.
If you decide to use the same app, you can try and collaborate together. Let’s say they want to post something on Instagram and are deciding on a caption for it. You can look up Instagram captions for girls and find out what they’re looking for. Spending time together on the internet will create a sense of trust. You can explore and research your hobbies and preferences together. It might turn out that you’re interested in a digital decor magazine and your child is interested in trendy games. You can compromise and genuinely show interest in each other’s preferences.
Set internet rules and regulations
Quite a number of social media contacts are out there that can get parents started with imposing boundaries on the internet. These contracts set a guideline that your child should follow. Make sure your child reads all the rules and regulations. For example, if there is an app or webpage that is rated for people above 18 years-old, a 12 year-old shouldn’t be on that platform. As a parent, you need to enforce this and make them see the reasons for it. This particular case is not one of subscribing to the same platform in order to monitor them. They shouldn’t even be there in the first place.
Protecting your child’s privacy online
As mentioned earlier, there are many on dangers on the internet these days that children are particularly vulnerable to. Children are easily tricked into crazy adventures whose dangers they are oblivious to. Do you stop your child from using a smartphone then? Well, that would be preposterous, but you can find a way to hide their identity or protect their privacy online using residential proxies. A residential proxy is an IP address provided by an internet service provider to a homeowner. It is a real IP address attached to a specific location that allows users to imitate organic browsing behavior, and thus, extract some content and data of the visited websites. Using residential proxies is great, but a rotating residential proxy offers even better protection. It assigns a new IP address from the proxy pool for every connection. This makes it extremely difficult for intruders with unknown intentions. With the use of residential proxies, your kids are guaranteed complete privacy in all their online activities. In case you need more information on how technology is evolving and how you can use that in your favor, you can check the tech section in Trendswe. As always, the information we find on the internet has a way to make our lives easier.
Educate your teens about online safety
Sometimes, imposing internet rules may not be sufficient in keeping track of your child’s digital life. You can do this when they’re with you in the house, but what about when they’re out of the house? Do they feel that they’re now free from all the shackles? This is where online safety education comes in. You need to explain to your kids the reason for any decisions you take for their safety on the internet. This shouldn’t be a one-off thing. Talking to them about the latest online trends will help them know that you’re aware of what is happening in the online world, rather than simply imposing rules on things you know nothing about. It is normal that people will tend to listen to you if they feel you have full knowledge on what you’re talking about. This education you offer them is what guides them when they’re left on their own to make the right decision.
Use parental control apps
Another way of keeping track of your children’s digital persona is by using parental control apps. Some parental control apps you can use are Websafety, Net Nanny, and Qustodio Parental Control. There is no perfect parental control app, as each one has unique service offerings and settings. It is also important as a parent to stay up to date with the latest digital trends. This will tell you if you need to download another parental control app.
As parents, monitoring your child’s digital persona is not as easy as it seems. Children who have mixed with the wrong peers in school may make things difficult by trying to hide their online activities. However, it will also put them in check, as they wouldn’t put all of their lives out there if they knew you were keeping a close watch. All you need to do is to keep doing your part consistently, and this should be enough in protecting your children.