In this generation, where there’s a kid, there’s a smartphone or a tablet. Today, kids face more online threats and risks than before. Surprisingly, most of them have fallen victims to various online threats including phishing scams, identity theft, cyberbullying, and many other threats. With the rapidly changing technological landscape, kids adapt more quickly, and this is a burden and another responsibility for guardians/parents. Nevertheless, let it not be a reason for not teaching your kids about various cyber safety tips. Here are some few cyber skills you can teach them.
Safeguard/Lock your devices
Smartphones hold a lot of personally identifying information and not only for kids but also including yours. Always ensure your kids lock their smartphones with strong, unique passwords or using other biometric authentication mechanisms. Also, remind them not to leave their devices unattended. Besides physical theft, cybercriminals and other malicious actors will be after various information such as usernames and passwords to various accounts. With this information, the malicious actor can even get to you and propagate further attacks such as blackmail or even cyber bully your kids.
Also, remind your kids not ever to share their passwords with anyone, maybe except you.
Social media; proceed with caution
Everyone is excited to join popular social media sites such as Facebook or Instagram. It may sound creepy but do not let your kids join social media without your knowledge. Better yet, guide them when they are creating the accounts, show them the recommended privacy and security settings, and also teach them about things not to share online. This includes any personally identifiable information. Also, talk to them about what pictures they should share online and check for background information that might be a security risk.
Teach your kids about phishing scams, especially how to identify them; here is a recap. For starters, never open emails in the spam folder. Also never download attachments or open emails from people you don’t know. Tell them not to click on any links given in emails. And if they have to, remind them to double check the spellings on the URL, check with various search engines if it’s the legitimate website and also ensure the URL starts with https. Lastly, if any websites require them to fill up any forms, remind them of what information they should never give up.
Backup and Update their devices
Kids usually concentrate on a few apps; either its social media or games. This means they won’t be bothered with other things such as updates or backing up their data. For older kids, you can teach them the importance of backing up their data and updating their devices if updates are available. You have to do it for younger kids.
Dangers of public Wi-Fi
Kids love the internet, and as much as you’ll be restricting them at home, they’ll opt for free public Wi-Fi hotspots. With various dangers lurking around waiting for vulnerable people such as kids, malicious actors may end up compromising your household. Always advice your kids not to use public Wi-Fi at all costs.
Use a VPN – IPBurger VPN
Subscribe to a reputable VPN such as IPburger VPN and install the various VPN apps on your kids’ devices. Explain to them what a VPN does. In a nutshell, teach them that a VPN encrypts their internet traffic and that makes it invisible to malicious actors and prying eyes. Tell them a VPN is essential in ensuring that their privacy on the internet is not compromised.