In a world that is relying more and more on technology, it is important to teach and incorporate good cyber safety habits into your kid’s routine. It is nearly impossible to keep your kids away from cyberspace as they grow, so it is in your best interest to teach and implement good practices as soon as they pick up the device. With summer around the corner and the kids being home more, here are some cybersecurity tips for kids you need to know! 

Tip #1

If your kid is at an age to be operating a device, it is time to start talking about and implementing online safety habits to ensure their cybersecurity. It is important to explain to them why we practice good cybersecurity and give examples such as cyberbullying, phishing, identity theft, sexting, viruses, social networking, etc. Knowing the cyber risks can help them come to an agreeance to follow safe practices and work with you on how best to manage their devices. 

Tip #2

Understanding why we implement good cybersecurity habits is very important, but as a parent how you choose to implement and maintain those habits are crucial to reducing cyber risks. As a parent, you have the authority to choose when and how your kids operate their devices. Here are some things to consider implementing: 

  • How often are they allowed to use their device? Set times of day to allow screen time. 
  • Password protect their device to a code only you know. 
  • Set an area of your home for devices to be used so they are not on them unmonitored.
  • Set up a charging station for your kids to put their devices away. 

Tip #3

It is very important to keep your security software current. Be sure to keep your kid’s devices clean having the latest systems, apps, software, web browsers, and anti-virus protection. Did you know that it is a cyber risk to keep old apps you are not using? You can automate these updates, so they happen immediately to defend against potential risks. It is also extremely important to make sure their passwords and personal information are up to date and approved through you. 

Tip #4

There will be instances where your kid will encounter inappropriate online material or send something they shouldn’t. The best thing you can do in these situations is to minimize your reaction and give constructive advice to move forward. Using these situations as a teachable moment will help encourage cautiousness for the next time they click an ad, visit a website, or send something online. Understanding what they visit and send can be copied and pasted elsewhere can help them realize what is on the line in the long run. 

It is extremely important to stay engaged with your kids’ online safety and usage. Helping them understand why and how we implement safe cybersecurity is key to reducing cyber risks, bullying, hurtful comments, damaged reputations or friendships, and inappropriate online material. Good online habits will take them a long way in life, do not hesitate to have these conversations now and make your plan on how you can best monitor and continuously implement safe habits.