Child and Teen Safety on the Internet
The Internet is a vast and growing network of people and information. With millions of individuals all over the world logging in on a daily basis, this complex community hosts sites of all kind with true and false information on a vast amount of subjects. Today the Internet is not only for adults. Teenagers and children are also utilizing this network of networks for everything from education to entertainment. They are privy to the same vast pool of uncensored and ungoverned information that their parents are. Of course with this type of access comes many levels of risk. Parents and guardians should be aware of what the risks are, where they are found, and how to prevent or reduce them.
- Understanding the Internet - A resource for parents to better understand frequented Internet sites of children
- Net Safe Kids – A parents’ guide to protecting their children both on the Internet and in the community.
There are infinite risks when a child or teen uses the Internet. It is a network of strangers, both safe and dangerous. According to thePreda Foundation there are around 750,000 sexual predators on the Internet with the sole purpose of making contact with children. Thievery, particularly identify theft, is also a substantial risk. Thieves too may gain access to a child or family’s personal information by gaining the trust of the child throughfaux relationships or persuasive behavior. Additionally there is an endless amount of violent and sexually explicit sites that are inappropriate for any child or teen to visit.
- Internet Pedophiles- Facts about sexual predators on the Internet.
- Police Notebook – A thorough look at what Identity Theft is, how it happens, and how to prevent it
- Risks of Internet in K-12 Curriculum – Discusses the risks of incorporating the Internet into K-12 curriculum's and the solutions to these problems
- Children's Internet Risks and Benefits – A look at the various risks, benefits, and parental guidelines for children’s Internet use
Being able to reduce a child or teen’s risk on the Internet means understanding where and what the most dangerous sites are. As a general rule, any area that allows public communication should be considered risky. This includes chat rooms, instant messaging, newsgroups, forums, and bulletin boards. Social predators are known to commonly visit chat rooms and communicate with children through instant messaging. Additionally, parents or guardians should closely monitor sites that allow purchasing or ask for any personal information.
- Child Internet Safety – A resource for parents on child Internet safety
- Smart Parenting – Dissecting the Internet’s safe and dangerous areas
It is impossible to monitor your child or teen’s Internet use 24 hours a day, seven days a week. However, there are important steps that a parent or guardian can take to reduce risks. Children and teens should know basic street smarts when navigating the Internet. This includes understanding that much of the information is trustworthy but there is false material around every turn. The people that occupy chat rooms, bulletin boards, newsgroups, and other networks are not always who they say they are. It is important children and teens know to never give out personal information, allow meetings, or respond to hostile or uncomfortable subject matter.
The sites children or teens frequent should be constantly monitored. Computers should be moved to public areas of the home and there should be a limit on the amount of time spent on the Internet. The more children and teens know about the dangers of the Internet, the better. The more parents and guardians regulate the when, where, why, and how of Internet use, the less risk there will be for the child in the end.
- Internet Safety – Safety tips on protecting children from Internet dangers
- Parents' Guide to Internet Safety – The FBI’s comprehensive look at how to keep children safe on the Internet
- Youth Internet Safety Survey – Stats on sexual solicitation encounters of children
- Children on the Internet – Numerous stats on where, when, and how often children use the Internet
- K-12 Internet Stats – Stats on children and teen Internet usage
- Internet Crimes Against Children – Stats on crimes against children as reported by the Arizona Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force
- Blocking Internet Usage – Information about a number of technology-based tools that protect children from inappropriate material
- Porn Blocker – Parental porn blocker website
- Online Bullying – Tips to help when children are bullied online
- The Internet: A Breeding Ground for Online Pedophiles – Article about pedophiles on the Internet
- Violence Against Children in Cyberspace – Article about the various forms of violence toward children on the Internet
- Should Cyberspace Chat Rooms be Closed to Protect Children? - A look at the harm chat rooms have caused and what steps should be taken to protect children from them