9 Easy Guidelines to Keep Kids Safe Online

parentingages and stages

Keeping our kids safe is one of the many responsibilities as a parent.  We lather on sunscreen, strap on a helmet, and tighten those seat belts.  We also teach them to be leery of  strangers and try to explain what "good touch, bad touch" is.  As parents, we try to keep our kids safe, and that should include internet safety.

Concerned teenage girl with a laptop

We'd never let a toddler wander the planet unprotected and alone, so why do we  just hand them our smart devices and assume they're safe? With a few simple steps, we as parents can ensure better protection in the wide open internet.

9 Easy Guidelines to Keep Kids Safe Online

  • Agree on rules and enforce those rules.  Depending on the child's age and maturity, each child in the home should have catered rules to meet their needs, with appropriate consequences for breaking their agreement.
  • Parents need to be familiar with all devices and understand how to use and monitor each device, especially the browser's history.
  • Personal information should never be shared.  Phone numbers, addresses, school information, and "checking in" at various locations should be avoided.  Be sure to think twice before emailing personal photos.
  • Passwords to social media, email, etc. are known between child and parent.
  • Remember that people aren't as they seem online.  Chat rooms are very appealing to kids/teens and predators can easily create a false identity.  Agree on chat room use, if any at all.
  • Set times and locations the internet can be used.  Having a computer in a family room or a common area resists temptation to break rules.
  • Bookmark favorite sites for easy access and less "searching."
  • If a child has an inappropriate interaction, forward it to your service provider, or if serious enough to local authorities.  Always take their concerns seriously.
  • Communicate, communicate, communicate.  Having an open dialog will aide in more positive internet experience for you and your child.

The internet is here to stay, and teaching our kids to be safe and shield them against potential online danger is just another way parents can make sure their kids are protected.  Just like buckling  kids into safety seats, teaching them to safeguard themselves online will create a road to a very positive and rewarding experience with the internet.


What are you doing to ensure your kids are safe online?



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