This article was written by Andrew Azzopardi, consultant for ibrowsesafely.com.mt, Vodafone Malta Foundation
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat….the list of social media sites is already very long and as time goes on, it is bound to get longer. Parents need to involve themselves in their children’s online lives to help guide their progeny through the ever-changing cyber-world.
MCA’s latest study ‘Children’s Internet Use and Parents – Perceptions of Their Children’s Online Experience’, states that 99.4% of children in primary and secondary schools have access to the internet and 78% of children look to their parents for information related to the internet.
ibrowsesafely.com.mt has developed 6 golden rules to guide parents.
The keystone to putting the six golden rules into practice is laying the groundwork for an open and honest dialogue with your child. This means your children will be more likely to turn to you for support or advice if they find themselves in an uncomfortable, difficult or scary situation. This open-door policy is the best first line of defence to keeping your child safe online.
You should show an interest in the websites and social media platforms your children use and take the initiative to use the internet and learn about the latest technologies, apps and platforms. Platforms like ibrowsesafely.com.mt are a useful tool for parents to support and simplify this type of research.
Online activity should be approached very much like real life; discuss the benefits and dangers of the internet, ask your children about what they do to keep themselves safe. Sometimes they might not have even thought about safety and having a straightforward but stress-free chat about it can raise their awareness without alarming them unnecessarily.
For more detail on each of the 6 Golden Rules, please visit ibrowsesafely.com.mt. ibrowsesafely.com.mt is an initiative born within the Vodafone Malta Foundation, as part of Vodafone Group initiative Digital Parenting.