3 Ways to Protect Your Child’s Online Privacy
A new school year is underway, and that means all kinds of activities to share with your family and friends—sports games, piano recitals, dance performances, and science projects. You want to support all of your child’s endeavors and share accomplishments with loved ones. But as you start to post pictures and messages online, be careful of the information you give out. Are you invading your child’s privacy? Perpetrators of sexual abuse can use things like social media posts to target and build relationships with potential victims.
Information online can easily become accessible to others. Cybersecurity expert Lance Cottrell says parents easily fall into the trap of having unrealistic expectations for privacy when it comes to posting online. As he says, “It’s like I want to hire a skywriter…but for nobody else to read it.” Here are a few simple things you can do to protect your child’s online privacy.
Don’t give too much information.
Ensure that your accounts are private and secure.
Consider posting less.
Make sure you share this information with your kids, too. You want to do everything you can to protect their privacy online and keep them safe, but you also want to teach them to watch out for themselves. Have open conversations with your kids about online privacy and what’s appropriate to post and what’s not, especially as kids get older. Make sure your kids know that if they ever feel unsafe online or if they feel like they’ve made a mistake, they can come to you for help. You can be the biggest teacher and the biggest advocate for your child’s safety and privacy.
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