The widespread adoption of digital devices has enhanced kids’ probabilities of exposing to cyberbullying and predation. The excessive and unsupervised use of smartphones and computers can put a horrible impact on your kid’s physical and mental health. Many teens and tweens have been suffering from depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and suicidal thoughts after being a victim of harassment and predation.
Parents are responsible to protect their children from the vulnerabilities of the digital world. This article discusses the most effective practices that can ensure the protection of kids from online bullying and child predation.
What is Cyberbullying?
The use of electronic means such as mobile phones and computers to frequently tease, harass, offend, threat or humiliate someone is known as cyberbullying. The social networking platforms have been playing a key role in the prevalence of online harassments and crimes.
The harassers can post harassing stuff on target’s posts keeping their identities hidden. The victims of consistent online harassment have been suffering from psychological, physical and mental health issues. Many younger kids have committed suicide after failing to find support against the persecutor. Here are some of the most popular cyber-bullying forms and types to get knowledge.
What is Online Child Predation?
The sexual exploitation of young boys and girl between the age of 8 and 12 is termed as online child predation. The predators trap kids; induce them to enter into a romantic relationship; and exploit them to produce content relating to child pornography. When the victims fail to get out of the trap they take sever actions like suicide or self-harm activities.
How to Protect Kids from Cyberbullying and Child Predation?
Parents are needed to protect their children from the curse of cyber-bullying and predation. They can ensure their kid’s protection in the online world with a few simple practices. Read on to know what those practices are.
Limit Kids’ Screen Time
The more time kids spend on mobile phones and computer screens the more likely they are to become a victim of online crimes. Setting screen time limits can protect your kids from many potential online dangers. You should forbid the use of smartphones at bedtime or late at night because this is when predators look for the victim.
Supervise Internet Usage
Parents must know what information their kids have been searching on the internet. The unsupervised internet use can make your kids exposed to sexually explicit and age-inappropriate content. Parents can monitor the internet activities of their children by getting access to the internet browsing history of their devices. The surveillance software for digital devices provides the user with the browsing details of the user. You can block access to age-inappropriate websites to make the internet kid-friendly.
Use Parental Controls
Google offers parental controls enabling parents to manage the internet use of their children. It allows blocking access to material that is not kid-friendly. Parents can also take the support of mobile and computer monitoring app to monitor and control the digital devices of kids. The app lets you supervise online and offline activities of your children to keep them from wrongdoings.
Set Digital Rules
You must set some rules to help your kids use the digital devices responsibly and securely. There are a few rules that can protect your kids from bullies and predators.
- Do not communicate with strangers online.
- Do not accept friend requests of strangers.
- Do not respond to bullying messages or comments.
- Immediately inform your elders if you receive any threatening or harassing message before deleting that message.
- Do not make public profiles on social media for personal use.
- Do not go online late at night.
- Do not share personal information on online platforms.
- Do not post explicit photos and videos on socializing platforms.
- Do not plan meet-ups with online fellows without bringing into the notice of parents.
Follow Social Media
If your kids feel comfortable having you on their social media friend-list, make sure you are there. It would allow you to supervise your kids’ online posts, comments and friend circle. However, you should be careful in making comments or your kid’s posts. Any angry or insulting comments or posts by parents on kid’s profile can spoil things.
Hope this article would be helpful in learning ways to protect kids from bullies and predators.