Internet Safety for Children

Join The Hamilton County Health Department and their Health Education Specialist, James Ginder, for a Q & A on Internet Safety for Children.

What are common online risks children may face?
Children may encounter cyberbullying, identity theft, exposure to inappropriate content, and the risk of interacting with strangers. Being aware of these risks allows parents to guide their children effectively.

How can parents monitor their child’s online activities without invading their privacy?
Parents should consider the age of the child and utilize a combination of built-in device settings, third-party applications, and clear boundaries. Selecting age-appropriate devices is critical, as is setting the child’s accurate date of birth on the device. Leverage screen time settings and check for the number of saved accounts within applications. Multiple usernames and passwords should raise concerns. Be sure to educate your child about responsible digital behavior.

How can parents ensure their child’s privacy is protected on social media platforms?
Parents should help their children set strict privacy settings and encourage them to only connect with known friends. They should also limit sharing personal information – especially their full name. Also encourage them to limit the amount of identifiable information they share like school uniforms or team names. Regularly reviewing and updating these settings is crucial.

How old should my child be before I allow them to have social media?
Many social media platforms require users to be at least 13 years old due to privacy and safety regulations. However, the decision to allow your child to have a social media account depends on several factors, including their maturity level and your comfort level as a parent. Consider starting with age-appropriate platforms designed for younger users before transitioning to more mainstream social media.

How do I balance my child’s online and offline activities?
Encourage a healthy balance by setting limits on screen time, promoting outdoor activities, and engaging in offline family time. Do not allow your child to keep their phone in their bedroom at night and model responsible device use yourself.

How can I learn more?
Join the Hamilton County Health Department and the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office for a
FREE Internet Safety webinar for parents on Wednesday, January 24 at 6:00 p.m. Please click HERE to register.

The Hamilton County Health Department is offering a valuable opportunity for parents and caregivers in the community with their upcoming series of free monthly webinars on children’s health in 2024. Led by experts in the field, these webinars aim to provide valuable information and resources to promote the well-being of children. 

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