Home Security – Protect Your Children On-line
During our daily life, we concern ourselves mainly with home security; enabling the security alarm, locking the door whenever we leave, and so on. However, there’s another menace out there that is creeping through our society. This menace is Cyberstalking, the exploiting of our children through the internet.
In my professional role in the Home Security Industry, I preach the values of the internet, not just for us as adults and professionals, but also for our children. Our kids have almost immediate access to any type of information available through the world. Want to read A Tale Of Two Cities? It’s on the web. Have a question about who the third person to land on the moon was? It is on the internet. Nevertheless, want to be exposed to nudity, pedophiles, and thousands (if not millions) of other social deviants? Without a doubt it’s on the internet and just a key touch away from your kid or grandchild. So, what do we do concerning this?
First, we educate ourselves. Go to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children web site at www.ncmec.org and download their study “Online Victimization – A Report on the Nation’s Youth.” This report will provide an eye-opening look at the perils our children are under every time they access America Online, Compuserve, or the web by way of the local Internet Service Provider. It also gives a telling survey on how parents deal with their children’s use of the internet. For instance, over 85% of parents have talked with their children about being careful talking to strangers on the internet, and 97% of those polled check from time to time on what’s on their child’s computer screen. But, simply half the parents ever go back and actually check history to ensure the child is certainly staying out of potential problem sites, and only 39% set a limit on the period of time their child can be on the internet. Although it appears that parents do realize the potential exposure their kids have on the internet, less than 1/2 play a really diligent role in ensuring their kid is protected.
Second, we educate others. Gather information from such websites as The National Center and many other child advocacy sites (such as www.pta.org), and speak to your fellow parents in your school system concerning the dangers exposed to our kids on the internet. Stay tuned for upcoming articles on ways to prevent your children from being exposed to unsuitable material. Bottom line: be involved with your child’s Internet experience. They currently have the world, literally, at their fingertips. Take the time to have it at yours as well. Part 2 explains the warning signs that your child is having a bad experience on-line.