November 20 is World Children’s Day, UNICEF’s annual celebration dedicated to promoting the rights of every child from every corner of the planet.
More frequently than not, children’s rights are under attack, whether in the real or digital world, creating more challenges that stop kids from living a secure, healthy and peaceful life.
Under the guise of this World Children’s Day ‘For every child, every right’, we want to emphasize the importance of protecting children from the dangers involving technology and the internet.
No child should ever have to be scared or feel hurt when going online. As caring adults, parents and caregivers, we must give children a strong understanding of the dangers they may be exposed to and give them the confidence to face new challenges and grow.
Our goal is simple, we want to help create a safe digital space for all, where children can be themselves, learn and play, and be shielded from online dangers and bullying.
Even small actions can make a difference in a child’s digital wellbeing, whether they are just beginning to explore the digital world or not. While parents could advise kids to stay away from technology and the internet altogether, this option is not a realistic one, as you would only put kids at a disadvantage.
This Children’s Day, we can empower kids and teach them how to fend off online dangers, by educating them on the DOS and DONTS of internet usage.
The five DO’s to ensure online safety and privacy
- Always secure online accounts with strong and unique passwords and enable any additional layer of security such as 2FA. This will ensure that their accounts and data are protected against hacking attempts. Do this for every online account, whether social media, gaming or school platform.
- Always choose privacy settings against convenience. Setting up privacy and security on all online accounts is a must. Children's accounts should be private at all times so that scammers and other digital miscreants can’t snoop on their online activity or contact them.
- Always keep a clean digital footprint. The more positive their engagement online, the more they will increase their future opportunities, whether in school, relationships or job perspectives.
- Always communicate any suspicious behaviors, activities or messages they receive to a trusted adult, family member or teacher. Children should also share information about the people they engage with online, the platforms they use and their overall experiences
- Always ask for permission before downloading new apps on personal or family devices or creating accounts on new platforms. Parents should look over the apps kids use and check for any suspicious apps that could pose a danger to the child, the device or data.
The five DONTs
- Never share personal information with strangers they meet online, while gaming, using social media or forums. A child should never give their home address, phone number, or any other sensitive information (passwords, credit cards, photos or videos) about themselves or their family to anyone they meet online.
- Never engage in mean conversations, post nasty comments, spread rumors online or make fun of others online.
- Never speak to strangers who contact them via instant messaging platforms apps, emails or phone.
- Never click on links they receive in unsolicited messages, or click on pop-ups they see online.
- Never download new apps or create accounts on platforms unsuitable for their age.
Keep your kids and family protected against all e-threats by choosing a Bitdefender all-in-one plans. On top of complete malware protection, Bitdefender solutions come with Parental control features that can help children self-regulate their online behavior and protect them from harm.