A few decades ago, 7-year old barely knew how to work a TV remote. If you’re a 90’s kid, you probably didn’t have access to the internet till you were at least 20 years old. But now, things are much different. 7-year-olds are now making circuit boards, being named Microsoft Certified Engineers, and doing things adults have been trying to for so long. So, what’s different? Did God start making the 21st century more intellectually capable than the kids of the 18th century? No – The only difference is the fact that computers are considered a desperate need these days. No one can live without at least one laptop, and one Smartphone and children are no different.
When people say that seven-year-olds have access to computers and the internet in their schools as well as their homes, you probably wonder what they do online. The answer would be cartoons, games, etc. That is what a seven-year-olds life is made of. But, everyone knows that so much power in the hands of kids with such tender minds is never a good thing. When you think that they’re watching Pokemon, they could be doing something completely else. Here is a list of things, they could be doing.
Porn is pretty easy to access on the internet. As far as the age restrictions go, all you have to bypass them is to press “Yes, I am 18+” – which means that they are just a waste of our time. Pornography could have a really bad effect on a 7-year-old child. This is the age for a child to learn a brand new things, build creativity, gain wisdom and when they access things like that, that could only mean trouble for them.
Signing Up On Social Networking Apps
All social networking websites clearly state that they are 13+ applications. While some go to the limit of declaring themselves as 18+. But, it’s all the same for children. They won’t care if an app Is 18+ or only meant for seniors. You’re probably thinking “But, the apps have age restrictions.” They do, but if you’ve ever made a Facebook account, you would know better. All you have to do is make a new email account with a DOB that would make your 18+, and you’re good to go. After they get into those apps, they will probably start chatting with a bunch of strangers, and mostly strangers of the opposite gender. Whether the child is male or female, the only thing they probably want to do is get to get down with some strangers.
If your child gets on Instagram or Snapchat, you can be a 100% sure that they are posting images and videos. Whether these images and videos are of themselves or someone else that is another thing on it’s on. It should concern you because your child could be posting inappropriate content on the web. Moreover, they could even be posting inappropriate content of themselves that would be considered child abuse if someone else was posting them.
How Can You Make the Internet Safer?
You can’t make it completely safe for your child. But, you could probably take a few precautionary steps that would help you achieve your goal.
- Limit the time your child gets to a computer or mobile.
- Stay right beside them when they are using the internet.
- Try checking the browsing history frequently.
- Talk to them if you find even a single suspicious search.
Of course, these steps are only applicable if your child is new to the internet, but if they have been using the internet for a while now, you should probably start using parental monitoring applications.
What Are Parental Monitoring Applications?
Mobile parental monitoring applications are basically cell phone spy apps that are only used for safety purposes and not for stalking someone. These applications are specially designed to help parents take care of their children. These apps provide a variety of services that are made to help you watch your child’s online and offline activities. You could take a peek into their internet history. You could see what they’re doing with the Social Networking Applications they have installed on their device. You could see all the text messages sent and received from their phone along with the time stamps for when they took place. So, you could know who they talk to over the internet. Making sure that you know if your child decides to do anything they’re not supposed to.
Aline Carrara is a digital parenting expert and social media experimentalist. She is an editor at TheOneSpy blog and a strong member of stop cyberbullying campaign. Her work on cyberbullying prevention tips got a great popularity over the internet. To know more about her follow her on Twitter @alinecarrara7