How to educate children for good use of the internet?

The use of new technologies by minors is widespread, as reported in the TICH_2019 report of the National Statistics Institute. Without going any further, the use of the computer is very high (89.7% of children have it) and, even more, the use of the internet (92.9%). On the other hand, 66.0% of the population aged 10 to 15 have a mobile phone. By age, the use of smartphones is almost widespread since the age of 14, since at this age 92.5% have one. With another year, the number of young people with mobile reaches 93.8%.

The insurance comparator has made a report that reveals some risk behaviors among Spanish Internet users. The objective is to make users aware of the importance of carrying out a responsible and safe attitude on the Web. Spain is the European country where the Internet is most browsed, with 87.7% of the population frequently using the network. Many of them, children.

In this context, it is worth asking whether Spanish minors are being educated in the proper use of the Network and in the facilities they may have to access certain content not recommended for their age.

A matter of education

The access of children to the internet is a matter that worries many parents and that, in many cases, it is not known to address due to the lack of references. Knowing how to surf the internet is a capital issue of current education. From a very young age (10 years), children have access to the Internet, a tool that has its pros and cons , and to which it is almost inevitable to restrict access. Therefore, it is essential to know how to control the times of use , the places to which they access and the dangers to which they may be exposed.

There are thousands of websites that request to verify the age of majority to access them. The sites of brands of alcoholic beverages, private chats and some of sexual content, place a form when accessing them that is easily filled. So much, that you can lie to access. This is one of the biggest problems, because you never know who is on the other side of any conversation.; It can be an organization that follows the legal channels to operate on the Web or, at the other end, an ‘internet predator’. Your goal is to chat -as a minimum- with minors. According to a report by UNICEF, 9 out of 10 child sexual abuse websites are identified worldwide, and hosted in Canada, the United States, France, the Netherlands and Russia. In addition, the report states that young people are the most connected age group in the world, 71% use the internet, so in proportion, they are clearly the most vulnerable group to suffer harassment in the network.

On the occasion of the cybersecurity week, the experts of the insurance comparator have collected a series of tips that can help you control your children’s internet access :

– Talk to them and teach them that the information on the internet is not private , and that the content they hang may take years to disappear or never do.

– Have the computer or any other device used to access the Internet in an area shared with the family, preventing them from using it alone in the room.

– Establish times and schedules to navigate, since excessive use can have negative effects on your personality and abilities to interact with others.

– Have contracted the guarantee of computer assistance in our home insurance, to receive advice and solutions to any problem that may occur.

– Check your browsing history frequently or restrict access to certain websites.

– Update security systems and teach children not to share personal information such as age, address or telephone.

– Talk to them so they don’t accept chatting with people they don’t know or that may be strange to them.

– Update the mobile , Android or iOS operating systems , as manufacturers occasionally release patches that avoid possible security breaches. It is also necessary to have the latest versions of the apps that are used, such as WhatsApp, Hangouts, certain social networks …

– Control the installation of applications , especially those that have advertising inserted in their services, even if they are apps for making videos or retouching photographs.

– Change passwords frequently to monitor each access to audiovisual content accounts such as Netflix, HBO or YouTube itself.

This last point is certainly relevant, since the contents of distribution platforms such as those mentioned above also host videos not recommended for certain ages , according to the cataloging by each of them. However, it is recommended the parental control configuration with password so that, in any case, it is an adult who enters it at the time of viewing. Otherwise, it is convenient to change it frequently.

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