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© Gail Underwood Parker

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Parenting Tips: Internet Safety/Privacy

Educating our children about internet safety is critical today. [Let's put aside for the moment safety issues connected to cellphones and newer smart phones recently in the news and just talk about general internet.] 
According to a Harris poll : 
71% of all parents report having experienced one or more Internet-related issue with their children within the past year. This was four years ago! 

Combine that info with the results of a Nielsen poll in 2010 that found:
 10% of all the active internet community was children aged 2-11 

If you haven't already, sit down and develop your personal family rules about internet safety. Post them by the computer using pictures if needed for younger kids.  

Talk about them frequently! Here's one example:

Internet Safety Commandments

1. Thou shalt NEVER share your last name, school, age, phone number or address.
2. Thou shalt NEVER send photos of any kind to anyone without getting parent's permission.

3. Thou shalt NEVER tell someone your password, except your parents who MUST be told passwords.

4. If ANYthing online seems creepy or mean or strange, you MUST tell a grownup IMMEDIATELY.

5. Thou shalt NEVER accept something said or posted online as the truth without proof from other sources.  

In addition to those safety commandments I  added a few general usage rules for my house: 
--my kiddos must have permission to us the internet,
--my kiddos must use it in public areas of the house, [ex: not in their bedrooms]
--my kiddos  must not clear the history or they lose computer privileges for a minimum of one week. 

Above is an example of a student safety poster winner. Maybe your kids can help make a poster of your family safety commandments.

Image credits:,,,


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