When parents think about the dangers of the Internet, their thoughts usually turn to cyberbullying, online predators, and inappropriate web content. There are other dangers lurking behind the screen, however, and they could be just as dangerous to your child’s wellbeing and future. If your child’s online privacy and/or reputation is compromised, there could be dire consequences. Here’s how:
Many kids (and even adults) use the Internet much the way they would use a private diary. Unfortunately few—if any—thoughts you share on the Web are actually private. If your child gives out personal information online such as his or her full name, birthday, or even the school he or she attends, those with a will to do so could use this information to bring harm to them—either on or offline.
Your youngster’s reputation may be the very last thing he or she is thinking about when surfing the Web or interacting on social media networks, but it shouldn’t be. Not only are few things online private, but many of them are also permanent. Plus, more and more employers are using Facebook, Google+, and other online applications to vet prospective employees prior to hiring them. What does that mean for your child? It means the things he or she types today could come back to haunt him tomorrow, years from now, or whenever the time comes for him to seek employment.
### What You Can Do to Protect Your Child’s Online Privacy and Reputation
If you haven’t already done so, the very first step in protecting your child’s online privacy and reputation is to have a conversation about the importance of being discreet online. Let your youngster know exactly what information they can and cannot share. In general, any info that could potentially reveal your child’s identity should be kept completely private. But, don’t stop there. Make sure that your child knows why it’s important to maintain this level of privacy. Be clear about the negative consequences that could result from being too forthcoming on the Web.
Of course, the only one who should know exactly what your child is doing online is you. We all know that even good kids can be sneaky or simply forget the rules from time to time. If you want to ensure that what your child is saying on the Web is indeed harmless, then you may want to consider an online parental control app like Qustodio. Our free software can help you keep tabs on all of your child’s web-based communications from a central, easy-to-use dashboard.
Take the necessary measures to protect your child’s privacy and reputation. Download Qustodio today.