BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — In a digital world, it’s more important than ever to know what your kids are doing online.
“Their identities can be stolen and all these other things as well, but then there’s cyberbullying and the way you learn things (online),” Grapevine MSP chief information officer Robert Miles said. “Your kids are probably talking to individuals you don’t want them to.”
Along with cybersecurity, kids face issues like body dysmorphia, predation, and bullying, on the internet and through apps like Snapchat and Instagram. Studies by the CDC and other organizations estimate at least one in six high schoolers experiences cyberbullying.
Miles said to monitor what your kids are doing, you need to get involved.
“Especially if they’re small children, you should do those programs first,” Miles said. “You should get involved in them and see what the adds and takes are, because there’s so much more danger for small children than there are for adults.”
Another key to keeping kids safe?
Talk to them.
At an age-appropriate level, allow your kids to understand the dangers the internet can pose.
“For smaller children like mine, I just tell them, ‘We don’t talk about where we live, we don’t talk about what Daddy does, or personal information like Mommy and Daddy’s real names,’” Miles said.
For teens, Miles recommends giving it to them straight.
“I think you just have to do the same thing you do with adults,” Miles said. “This is the truth, this is the risk, and this is what you should not do.”
For resources on how to spot and stop cyberbullying, visit stopbullying.gov.