The media presence of technology has massively increased in recent years, so that children in the household of parents almost inevitably come into contact with the Internet. Although it is quite desirable that the youngest come into contact with computer technology at an early stage and learn how to use a PC and laptop, there are also great dangers on the Internet. Since three-year-olds are already using tablets, smartphones and laptops, this situation is a challenge for parents. Although there are certainly parental controls on the appropriate devices, but the parents should not blindly rely on these protective functions as they can easily be tricked in many cases.
Parents have to ensure safety
The Internet is quite a source of exciting and interesting topics that can help the little ones grow up and learn. However, there are also topics that can overwhelm the little ones or are simply inappropriate, so that the surfing behavior of children requires the attention of parents, It is the responsibility of parents that children really only get to know the fun side of the internet and not become victims of inappropriate content that can negatively influence the development process of the youngest.
To prevent this, parents can set up barriers, so that the children can not be overwhelmed. This security can already be made with a few simple mouse clicks and keyboard shortcuts. However, this assumes that the parents really know where to find the security settings on the device. Parental control functions can already be set by the fact that on a laptop each user owns his own user account with the appropriate security settings.
Protect children with filters
On the laptop there are different ways of protection of minors. Using so-called filtering software, parents can effectively block their children’s way to inappropriate online content without having to control it around the clock. In current practice, good filter programs work with so-called white lists that contain the shared websites. All websites that are not white listed are simply blocked by the filter program. However, parents should exercise caution when using so-called blacklist software. Although there is an enormous selection of programs on the market, not all software protection features are by far far from good. Especially adolescents with a good understanding of technology can easily bypass many of these programs by selecting another WLAN network – if they have the access data of this network. However, since children play with other children from the neighborhood, it is never completely excluded, that passwords for the domestic networks are also exchanged. If the child simply chooses another network, the protection of most blacklisted software solutions is bypassed. The safest method of protection of minors on the Internet is therefore always control by the parents. Not much speaks against “supervised” community surfing, as it enables parents to recognize dangers early on and prevent them from happening.
From the age of 11 or 12, it can happen that the child feels a desire for privacy. Parents will then simply no longer be able to guarantee the safe laptop for children. However, with a good relationship of trust between the child and the parents, considerably more can be achieved. If the children know that they can turn to their parents at all times and with all concerns, it will be much easier to control their surfing behavior than by blindly banning them. It is and remains a fact that children have to grow up with technology. At the beginning it pays off to buy a used or refurbished notebook until the child learns to use the device responsibly. Up to a certain age, the technology used can also be well secured by the system settings and filter programs, but these “barriers” become more and more ineffective with increasing age of the child. Only then, if the parents are constantly showing an interest in their children and the Internet, the child will really be protected from the unpleasant content. Parents are therefore required to be constantly alert and never leave their children alone with the Internet.