Scary facts about kids and social media – What you need to know

6981290631_122745a22c_kIf you have a teen (or even a tween), chances are they have a cell phone and direct access to the internet and social media. Children at this age are extremely susceptible to threats presented by the internet and social media.

The dangers of social apps

False identities are so easily created on these social apps, and children can trust someone so easily.

The National South African Police Services has issued a statement in order to create awareness about the dangers of social media for kids. According to this statement, internet predators are one of the biggest online threats to children. And unfortunately, internet predators are only identified once it’s too late.

What you can do to keep your children safe from online predators

One of the most important things parents can do, is to stay informed and keep a close relationship with their children. Also teach your children about online safety:

Internet safety tips for children:

[Source: The Tembisan – Date: 6 Aug 2014]

  • Never give out personal information such as your address, telephone numbers or the name and location of your school without your parents’ permission.
  • Only accept friends you know. Do not let strangers follow you on social media websites in the same way as you would not let a stranger follow you in real life.
  • Tell your parents immediately if you come across any information that make you feel uncomfortable.
  • Never agree to meet with someone you have met online without first checking with your parents. If your parents agree to the meeting, ensure that it is in a public place and bring a parent along.
  • Never send a person your picture or anything else without first checking with your parents.
  • Do not give your passwords to anyone other than your parents, not even your best friends.
  • Check with your parents before downloading or installing software or doing anything that could possibly jeopardise your family’s privacy.

Social media acronyms that parents should know:

[Source: The Tembisan – Date: 6 Aug 2014]MC001-AUG14

  • GNOC – Get Naked On Cam
  • NIFOC – Naked In Front Of Computer
  • PAW – Parents Are Watching
  • PIR – Parent In Room
  • POS – Parent Over Shoulder
  • TDTM – Talk Dirty To Me
  • ASL(R P) – Age Sex Location (Race/Picture)
  • (L)MIRL – (Let us) meet in real life
  •  MOS – Mom Over Shoulder
  • PRON – Porn
  • FYEO – For Your Eyes Only

If you have children using the internet, we encourage you to join us on 1 October 2014 at Maccauvlei on Vaal in Vereeniging. Emma Sadleir will talk about Online Safety for kids. Book your seat, which includes a Cheese & Wine, for only R150pp. For more information contact / 016 420 2000

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