Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Keeping Your Kids Safe On-Line

Like any new technology the internet is full of potentially good outcomes but it comes with plenty of potentially negative outcomes.  This has always been true of any new technology.  Try to remember that the technology itself isn't good or bad, its how we choose to use it that's good or bad.
First, some of the good stuff we can get from the internet:
  • Improved communications via email, instant messaging, internet phones and video.
  • Data storage and sharing across the world
  • The potential of networking ideas and knowledge without boundaries
  • The democratization of information
Then some of the bad stuff:
  • Internet crime such as online scams
  • Misuse of information for negative results
  • Character attacks and "cyber-bullying"
  • Exploitation of children and child predators
So how do you educate yourself on the bad stuff so you can help kids avoid it?  It should be no surprise that there is a whole bunch of websites out there that can help you: 
This site provides some practical tips from the federal government and the technology industry to help people guard against online fraud and protect personal information. 
They advertise themselves as a "Family Guide to making the Internet and technology fun, safe and productive."  Try this site for more detailed information about protecting kids on the internet.
Be Cyber Safe is a good overview of the dangers that are out there for kids while they are online.  It's full of information and links to additional resources.  Definitely a good site to check out.

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