Keep your kids safe online

Feature

Here are some top tips to keep your children protected online...
by
Keep your kids safe online

From socialising with friends to helping with homework, the web helps create well-rounded individuals - and provides them with really useful skills as they make their way through life. But alongside the good websites, there are as many that you wouldn’t want them to have access to. Here are a few of the best ways to keep them safe.

Download a parental control app

Keeping the family PC nice and safe is one thing, but it gets a little more complicated when phones and tablets come into play. That’s why downloading parenting control software is a good step to monitoring your kids’ screen time. Why not try one of these?:

Qustodio

Android (free), iOS (free)

Qustodio has the ability to filter web content, monitor and block calls, and has a ‘child location’ feature with a 30-day location history. It even includes a panic button so that your child can contact you in an emergency with just one click.

Kidslox

Android (free), iOS (free)

Kidslox is the perfect way to manage your kids’ phone time. You can set daily screen time limits, block all third-party apps individually or by category, create daily schedules and set periods of lockdown. Worried your tech-savvy kid will find a way to alter the restrictions? No need. It’s all PIN protected, too.

And there are plenty more where those came from. Just search ‘parental control apps’ in the Google Play or Apple Store and you’ll be faced with loads of completely free, user-friendly apps.

Restrict purchases

Put a stop to any sneaky or accidental in-app purchases – it’s easy to do.

On Android you can use password protection on the Google Play Store app. Just open the app and select Navigate to Menu > Settings > Require authentication for purchases > For all purchases.

To do the same on an Apple device go into Settings > General > Restrictions. Tap Enable Restrictions > enter a PIN then go to In-App Purchases in the list of options under the Restrictions tab.

Make YouTube and Facebook safer

Facebook

You don’t want your child chatting with strangers or watching inappropriate videos on Facebook. Although there are no obvious filters to restrict explicit content, you can block individual users and apps in the settings options. It’s worth remembering that the minimum age requirement for a Facebook account is 13, so it’s not really intended to be entirely child-friendly.

YouTube

Google offers an easy-to-use YouTube app for kids on Android and there’s another for iPhone/iPad. It’s completely free, has a simpler interface and uses algorithms to filter out unsuitable videos in search results.

Stay in the loop with Google Family Link

Give your kid a Google Account that's just like yours. They get to enjoy the freedom of their own account, but you get to keep an eye on what they're doing. For example, you can manage their apps, set a bedtime for their phone and limit screen time. We've written an article all about Google Family Link - see it here.

Set some rules

As well as putting parental filters in place, it’s important to educate children on the risks of online activity. Kids these days are digital pros, so you may want to cut down on – or ban completely – using their device alone in their bedroom. Tell them what is and isn’t acceptable online, and encourage them to let you know if they receive or see any inappropriate content. Keeping the channels of communication open is always really important.

Is there anything we’ve missed? What precautions have you put in place to keep your kids safe online? Let us know in the comments below.

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation here…

comments powered by Disqus

19 June, 2018
We've got all the big mobile gaming announcements from E3 2018, including Fortnite...
18 June, 2018
The new Samsung Galaxy A6 is a mid-range phone packed with premium tech, including...
14 June, 2018
There are plenty of easy ways that you can make your battery last longer. And we...
13 June, 2018
Preparing for festival season? You might want to leave your phone at home, and go...
12 June, 2018
The BlackBerry Key 2 truly is a thing of wonder, and it looks the part too. In this...

19 June, 2018
We've got all the big mobile gaming announcements from E3 2018, including Fortnite...
14 June, 2018
There are plenty of easy ways that you can make your battery last longer. And we...
13 June, 2018
Preparing for festival season? You might want to leave your phone at home, and go...
12 June, 2018
This summer, Twitter will be awash with funny World Cup content and not shortage...
8 June, 2018
YouTube Music has launched as a brand new music offering in the UK. Can in take on...
7 June, 2018
If you're looking for a new device in time for the World Cup games, look no further...
5 June, 2018
If you love Instagram, you’ll love their latest raft of updates, making it more personal,...
4 June, 2018
Google Assistant is your very own voice-controlled virtual assistant, ready to help...
3 June, 2018
There’s a whole world of apps out there that are fun and educational – and parent-friendly,...
1 June, 2018
Should you find yourself away from home when a crucial match is about to be played,...
31 May, 2018
If you're going to watch the World Cup on a smartphone, you need one with a decent...
29 May, 2018
When you’re looking for a phone for your child, have you ever considered SIM Only...