We live in a digital world, and since our children are becoming more tech-savvy in this social media age, it is quintessential to stay vigilant when it comes to the child’s online presence. Of course, the very ability to be connected with people from around the world is beneficial, but it does open up a share of risks and makes the child vulnerable. From cyberbullies to predators, any misuse of social media from the child’s end exposes him to severe consequences.
Here, we have come up with a few tips that will help you keep your child safe on social media.
Know about social media yourself
Back in the day, the only popular social media platform was Myspace and, of course, Facebook. However, that is no more the case. Hence, as a parent, you need to familiarize yourself with all the social media platforms that your child is on. It will also help you know which ones are apt for your child.
Here are some social media platforms for teens and kids:
Jennifer, a mother of two and an associate with TFTH, says that she has two teenage daughters, and she ensures that she keeps a close check on the social media platform that both of them use.
Set an age limit for your child to start using social media
Once you are done familiarizing yourself with the different social media platforms, you should also take a bit of a moment to understand the minimum age that each of these platforms needs. In most cases, you will find that the sites accept children who are 13 years or older. So, do not let a child below that age to use social media without your permission.
Check the privacy settings of your child.
After your child is already on social media, now your role becomes all the more critical. You have to be vigilant about their privacy settings. Do ensure that they are updated. These days social media sites continuously update their security settings to ensure that maximum protection is available. However, at times, these settings will have to be manually set by the user. Whatever it is, they should be updated at all times.
Ensure that your child has a private account
Sonya, a chemistry homework help provider with TAE, says that when she allowed her daughter to be on social media, there was only one condition set – she will have her profile private no matter what. Well, for children, it is a must. When the profile is private, only those people will be able to see your posts who you have added in your profile, and you need to ensure that the child only adds their friends and schoolmates on their profile, and no one they do not know. It is one of the most crucial steps to ensure that your child’s content is not misused.
Ensure that they do not put up personal details
Firstly, no check-ins; secondly, no personal detail about the child should be on social media. Personal detail would include everything from the phone number to the address, the school they go to, among other things. Today social media is such a quintessential part of our lives that it isn’t’ uncommon for people to put up every little detail about them online. Stanley, an assignment help provider with EduWorldUSA, says that before he let his 15-year old be on social media, he gave him a quick rule-book of what should and shouldn’t be shared on social media. Well, as a parent, it is indeed your responsibility to do that.
Do not ever let them put up pictures or videos, which puts their character or safety at risk.
Though children usually post pictures with their best intentions, it could be perceived in a wrong manner or might be taken out of context. Moreover, when everything and everyone is already online, the wrong message could have terrible and sometimes even life-long consequences. Talk with them, and tell them only to put up videos or pictures, which portray them positively.
Tell them to pick a strong password only
Anything like 1,2,3,4,5 or qwerty, or the date of birth, or their phone number, or their best friend’s name, or their crush’s name, are all weak passwords. Do you want to safeguard something important with a weak password? Of course not. Tell your child how important it is for them to protect their identity with a strong password. Maria, an online economics tutors at FineGrades, says that she has a simple rule, a password should always have uppercase, lowercase, alphabets, numbers, and special characters. That’s what she taught her kids. Well, indeed. A password is strong only when it is difficult for anyone around you to decode easily.