These days kids are more in tune with technology than ever. They use the internet to chat to their friends after school, do research for their homework and watch all their favourite videos and play games. It’s likely that your children are better with technology than you! While your kids are browsing and playing, it’s our job to keep them safe and make sure that they are getting the best from the internet. Here are ten tips for you to monitor the content your kids are looking at, and protect them from cyberbullying.


Keep tech in the open

One of the ways your children can access harmful content online is to browse behind closed doors. Taking their tablet, phone or laptop to their bedroom could be a recipe for disaster, so start young when it comes to tech rules at home. Perhaps laptops stay in open living areas only, and tablets get returned to you before bedtime. You could also turn off the Wi-Fi once you go to bed, so if your child does sneakily play on their tablet, they can only access pre-downloaded offline games and apps.


Stay social

This is the one tip your teenage kids may not like! Social media is a huge part of our lives now, children included. Kids as young as eleven are now posting selfies on Instagram, following their favourite celebrities on Twitter and tagging their friends on posts on Facebook. To keep one close eye on their online activity, become their friend online or follow their accounts and encourage interactions with frequent likes and the occasional comments. Keep it light, stay at a comfortable distance so as not to embarrass them, but just watch out for questionable pictures or distressed posts. Remember to let them express themselves online without judgement, but be ready to step in if you suspect bullying or strange behaviour.


Parental control software

We can’t be on the ball all the time, always watching our kids like a hawk! So we might need a little bit of help in the form of computer software. There are a million options for you to choose from, so it’s worth spending some time browsing different software and weighing up what you need. Some parental controls focus on vulgar language, others keep an eye out for cyberbullying, and some give time limits for your child to be online.


Filter YouTube’s videos and comments

YouTube is one of the most popular websites and apps for kids and teenagers these days. Young children can watch cartoons on the app and teenagers idolise YouTubers who build up a strong legion of young followers. There are some types of parental controls software, such as Net Nanny and Norton Family, that specifically focus on blocking inappropriate videos, filtering videos by age restrictions and hiding comments.


Speak to your child

An open communication is one of the most important things when it comes to internet safety. Have a candid conversation with your child about some of the negative things online such as offensive videos, cruel comments and dangerous chatrooms. Allow your child to ask any questions about things they see online and highly discourage secrets or too much private browsing.


Share passwords and usernames

If your teenager has several accounts online, whether it’s to download games, or for email or social media, you may want to keep a log of their usernames and ask your child to share their passwords with you. They may be reluctant at first, but be honest with them about your intentions. You may never use them or log into their accounts, but if there was ever to be an emergency, knowing their passwords could help you keep them safe.


Allow age-appropriate apps

Tablet games are great for keeping kids entertained on trains and over breakfast. Many of them are free and can be educational, but all games have a rating. Some particularly violent game will be aimed towards older teenagers or adults. Put a block on your app store account so only games with a certain age limit can be downloaded and played.


Share devices

As your child gets older they will no doubt want their own phone. But having a communal computer and tablet will make their online activity more transparent. Sharing the device means you can keep tabs on recent online activity and monitor downloads and apps.


Look beyond computers

There is that huge worry in our minds that our kids are talking to strangers online. With the right parental controls you can help to prevent unwanted messages and chatroom access. But laptops, tablets and mobile phones are not the only devices to be aware of when it comes to online activity. If your child has video games such as an Xbox, they may be using it to play games remotely with friends online. Check that your child knows who they are talking to, and ensure that there is no destructive language used in their messages.


Make your browser safe

Without the correct software, your child could stumble upon something upsetting or dangerous with just a quick Google search. To combat this, internet browsers come with optional parental controls. Google SafeSearch is easy to turn on and will filter out explicit search results. It can be applied on computers, tablets and mobile phones.

These days kids are more in tune with technology than ever. They use the internet to chat to their friends after school, do research for their homework and watch all their favourite videos and play games. It’s likely that your children are better with technology than you! While your kids are browsing and playing, it’s our job to keep them safe and make sure that they are getting the best from the internet. Here are ten tips for you to monitor the content your kids are looking at, and protect them from cyberbullying.


Keep tech in the open

One of the ways your children can access harmful content online is to browse behind closed doors. Taking their tablet, phone or laptop to their bedroom could be a recipe for disaster, so start young when it comes to tech rules at home. Perhaps laptops stay in open living areas only, and tablets get returned to you before bedtime. You could also turn off the Wi-Fi once you go to bed, so if your child does sneakily play on their tablet, they can only access pre-downloaded offline games and apps.


Stay social

This is the one tip your teenage kids may not like! Social media is a huge part of our lives now, children included. Kids as young as eleven are now posting selfies on Instagram, following their favourite celebrities on Twitter and tagging their friends on posts on Facebook. To keep one close eye on their online activity, become their friend online or follow their accounts and encourage interactions with frequent likes and the occasional comments. Keep it light, stay at a comfortable distance so as not to embarrass them, but just watch out for questionable pictures or distressed posts. Remember to let them express themselves online without judgement, but be ready to step in if you suspect bullying or strange behaviour.


Parental control software

We can’t be on the ball all the time, always watching our kids like a hawk! So we might need a little bit of help in the form of computer software. There are a million options for you to choose from, so it’s worth spending some time browsing different software and weighing up what you need. Some parental controls focus on vulgar language, others keep an eye out for cyberbullying, and some give time limits for your child to be online.


Filter YouTube’s videos and comments

YouTube is one of the most popular websites and apps for kids and teenagers these days. Young children can watch cartoons on the app and teenagers idolise YouTubers who build up a strong legion of young followers. There are some types of parental controls software, such as Net Nanny and Norton Family, that specifically focus on blocking inappropriate videos, filtering videos by age restrictions and hiding comments.


Speak to your child

An open communication is one of the most important things when it comes to internet safety. Have a candid conversation with your child about some of the negative things online such as offensive videos, cruel comments and dangerous chatrooms. Allow your child to ask any questions about things they see online and highly discourage secrets or too much private browsing.


Share passwords and usernames

If your teenager has several accounts online, whether it’s to download games, or for email or social media, you may want to keep a log of their usernames and ask your child to share their passwords with you. They may be reluctant at first, but be honest with them about your intentions. You may never use them or log into their accounts, but if there was ever to be an emergency, knowing their passwords could help you keep them safe.


Allow age-appropriate apps

Tablet games are great for keeping kids entertained on trains and over breakfast. Many of them are free and can be educational, but all games have a rating. Some particularly violent game will be aimed towards older teenagers or adults. Put a block on your app store account so only games with a certain age limit can be downloaded and played.


Share devices

As your child gets older they will no doubt want their own phone. But having a communal computer and tablet will make their online activity more transparent. Sharing the device means you can keep tabs on recent online activity and monitor downloads and apps.


Look beyond computers

There is that huge worry in our minds that our kids are talking to strangers online. With the right parental controls you can help to prevent unwanted messages and chatroom access. But laptops, tablets and mobile phones are not the only devices to be aware of when it comes to online activity. If your child has video games such as an Xbox, they may be using it to play games remotely with friends online. Check that your child knows who they are talking to, and ensure that there is no destructive language used in their messages.


Make your browser safe

Without the correct software, your child could stumble upon something upsetting or dangerous with just a quick Google search. To combat this, internet browsers come with optional parental controls. Google SafeSearch is easy to turn on and will filter out explicit search results. It can be applied on computers, tablets and mobile phones.