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5 Ways to Guard Your Teens Online

by Joseph
(Arlington,TX)

Only for parents,


Teens - Keep off!

Five tips on how to guard your teens regarding the dangers of social networking websites

If you have teenagers, then you know that they like to hang out on social networking websites. But you need to be aware that there are many online predators out there that like to find young teenagers and kids to prey upon.

That is why as a responsible parent, you need to take measures to make sure that you are keeping your kids safe when they are online, and this includes social networking sites.

1.) Learn how to use the internet yourself

The issue is that the internet world is new to a lot of parents. Parents didn't have the internet, and they might be at a loss as to the dangers that exist online. They might not know exactly what social networking websites are. These websites in short are places for people to socialize and meet each other online. They are also known as online communities. These sites are fun, but they are open to anyone. This is how online predators are able to get into these sites.

2.) It’s not enough to just say no – keep off!

You might think that the best ways to keep your kids safe, is just to tell them to stay off of social networking sites. This will certainly work, and you are free to tell you kids whatever you wish. But know that you don't have to go that far. More to the point, it would be better to educate yourself and your kids about how to stay safe online, rather to avoid the situation all together. Having said this, most sites are pretty safe.

3.) Know what you kids are doing on the internet

The first line of defense for you and your kids is to find out who they are communicating with online. Your kids are going to want to resist you, but you need to be the parent, and find this information out. You can read the profiles for anything strange, and train your kids to be on the lookout for anything that seems weird or untrue. If they see anything that strikes them as weird, or untruthful, then tell them to cut off communication right away.

4.) Open up to your children – Communication is the key

Next, find out the things that your teen is talking about. Even if they balk at this, let them know that you need to set boundaries about the things that they discuss, and they should too. Tell them to stay away from people who talk about sex, drugs, or other elicit activities. Teach your kids that there are plenty of other teenagers who don't engage in these activities, and who would be more suitable to talk to.

5.) Explain the dangers and level of risk involved with strangers

Talk to your teen about meeting people in person who they have met online. For teenagers, this is a no-no. Tell your teenagers that if someone offers to meet them offline, they should be reported to the authorities. Many teenagers and children have been abducted by criminals posing as kids.

If they feel that this person that they want to meet, then you need to go with them for their safety. And in any case, meet this person in a public place.

Try to get this person's parental information and consent as well. If you put the above things into practice, your teen can have a fun and safe experience using social networking sites. You have to do your part to keep them safe. When you do your part to promote awareness and safety, your child can take part in the social networking like everyone else.

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