Internet Safety for Kids
Fall is here and many children are back in school in the virtual classroom! This means they are spending even more time online; gaming, texting, watching or uploading videos to YouTube, or socializing through apps in addition to school. This also means cyber security risks are higher. Many children feel they know how to avoid getting hacked, but the reality is most of them don’t. In fact, over 1 million identities of children are stolen every year and 1 in 4 teens admit to sexting!
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What in the World Are Your Kids Doing Online
Popular Apps Kids Use, the Risks, and How to Be More Secure
Get Your Kids Talking About Online Safety
How to Freeze a Child's Credit
Many parents may not realize the risks of their child's information being stolen. They think, "Little Sophia is only 8, nobody is going to use her information....
Tools and Methods for Monitoring Activity
Many tools are available and some of them are already in your hands. Learn a few ways to set your family up for online safety success.
How to Identify If Your Kids Are in Trouble and How to Respond to an Incident
Little Johnny is getting harassed online by a stranger…now what? What do you do?
Zoom - Security Guide
Family Tech Agreement
Put everything you've learned together and set the expectations for you and your children to navigate a safer digital life with our free Family Technology Agreement.
Want to get your kids talking about cyber security. Try asking them the following question.
You will be surprised with their answers!
a) More than 1 million children become victims of identity theft or fraud each and every year.
- Two-thirds of those victims are age 7 or younger.
- Six in 10 child victims personally know the perpetrator - more often than not it is a family member.
b) A child’s identity is the most valuable to cyber criminals because they don’t have a bank account or financial history - they pretty much have a “blank slate” that doesn’t draw too much attention when fraudulent accounts are opened on their behalf.
c) Some measures to protect children from identity theft:
- Continue this conversation with them as well as watching the videos -stress the importance of keeping their private information completely “private”.
- Get the children in the habit of asking their parents for permission to release any information that is private or in which they feel uncomfortable sharing with others. This includes personal and medical information, pictures, videos, and any biometric data such as fingerprints.
- Contact Experian, Equifax and Transunion credit reporting agencies and put a freeze on their credit.
Unfortunately, cybercrime is rapidly growing and the chances of getting hacked are high. Among notified breach victims last year, 39 percent of minors became victims of fraud, versus 19 percent of adults.
It’s a bad idea to accept friend/follower requests from strangers on social media. A few things to look out for when you get a friend request.
- Do you have common friends?
- The amount of followers vs following? If the number of “following” is significantly more than “followers”, this usually means it’s a fake account.
- Are there any inappropriate pictures?
- Do you share the same interest?
Many scammers offer freebies such as v-bucks, free skins, followers, and so on... remember there are no free gifts. If you are offered something for free, then most likely it is a scam.
Some kids hack for fun, ego, money, boredom, or just to see how far they can go. Reinforce that hacking is illegal and although it may seem fun to some, the impact of getting caught or losing your identity can be a life-changing moment.
Inform or remind the kids that sending or receiving inappropriate pictures is against the law. This is considered child pornography and even kids could end up registered as sex offenders.
This conversation will help reinforce the question about accepting friends/followers on social media - a kid most likely wouldn’t share private information with a random person on the street, then why accept a person as a friend online who they don’t know.
Many of these chat servers offer free or low-cost accounts to many popular services such as Spotify, Hulu, etc... these free or low-cost accounts are usually hacked accounts of real people. Buying or using these accounts is illegal.
a) Sometimes cheats can come with extras, like viruses, and can be used to steal your information and or identity.
b) If the cheat provides a gamer with something that should normally be paid for, then it is unethical and possibly illegal.
If you think you are being hacked or scammed you should notify your parent(s) or teacher immediately. Once a cyber criminal has access to your device it is easier for them to hack the school, home, or parent's work computer.