More than a quarter of parents believe their children have been exposed to online risks, such as accessing inappropriate content or cyber bullying in the past 12 months, according to a Kaspersky Lab study. Despite this research, undertaken to mark Safer Internet Day taking place on 11th February, as many as one in five parents takes no action to govern their children’s online activity whether that be on the home computer or on mobile devices.
“Regardless of how their children are accessing the internet, parents must remain vigilant, supervise their internet use and consider parental control technologies. However, as a parent myself, I find these statistics particularly worrying when you consider the increasing number of children using connected smartphones today. After all, when children use mobile devices to access the web, they are using the same internet, with the same risks – yet parents are often not as aware of the dangers,” says David Emm, senior security researcher at Kaspersky Lab.
David Emm offers the following tips to stay safe online:
- Both Android smartphones and iPhones come with in-built parental controls – when purchasing a smartphone, ask the sales assistants to demonstrate these features. They have policies in place and a responsibility to make parents aware of these. By creating a demand, it is more likely they will let other parents know.
- Apply settings that prevent in-app purchases to save hefty bills should children stumble across a game with expensive add-ons.
- Install security software – these providers will offer apps to filter out inappropriate content, for example, adult images and senders of nuisance SMS messages.
- Encourage children to talk about their online experience and in particular, anything that makes them feel uncomfortable or threatened. Open a channel of communication so they feel they can discuss all areas of their online life without fear of judgement or reprimand.
- Protecting children from cyber bullies is especially challenging with smartphones as they can be targeted in so many ways, especially out of view of their parents. Deal with cyber bullying as you would in real life by encouraging children to be open and talk to a trusted adult if they experience any threatening or inappropriate messages. Numbers and contacts on apps can both be blocked if they are making children uncomfortable.
Kaspersky Lab offers an easy way of keeping your children safe online: the multi-device version of Kaspersky Internet Security. The security software provides real-time protection for multiple Windows PCs, Macs and Android smartphones and tablets, all with a single licence allowing families to be protected on every device in their home and keep their children safe online.
Readers of 92three30 can win a copy of Kaspersky Internet Security. Entry is by rafflecopter below.
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2. Entrants must be UK residents aged 18 years or older.
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6. Competition closes on 18 February 2014.
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