Back to school: Tips for parents to keep their kids safe online


How to foster the development of children who use the Internet to interact with others and supplement their school education

Mexico City, Mexico, August 29, 2022 — Avast (LSE:AVST), a global leader in digital security and privacy, shares tips that parents can use to ensure their children use the internet safely, especially during this back-to-school season. According to a survey published by UNICEF, between 80% and 94% of children aged 12 to 17 in Mexico have access to the Internet or a computer.

“In a new digital age, where we can access a whole universe of people, content, information and ways of living there at the click of a button, it is important to help children understand how they can stay safe by adding new friends, using social media, and using the network to help them with their homework,” says Javier Rincón, Regional Director for Latin America at Avast. “As the number of online users are increasing, vulnerabilities and threats are not far behind. And unfortunately, cybercriminals are taking advantage of the fact that more and more children have had to adapt to an increasingly digital world. Parents will be able to see from another perspective the threats that exist on the Internet to prevent and protect their children in this new school year by having the necessary knowledge.

Javier Rincón provides recommendations for parents concerned about their children’s digital lives on how to help them stay safe online.

start the conversation

As a first step, parents need to create a bond of trust with their children by having safe and open conversations with them, this is the clue.

Ideally, children should feel that their parents are their “safe place” and can approach them without fear. Parents need to monitor their online activities without feeling overwhelmed. This can be done by showing an interest in them, their friends, what they do and what they see online.

Raising awareness of digital security

Parents must be informed about how the Internet works and be involved in current social networks, content, trends, as well as the risks and vulnerabilities that exist there in order to share this information with their children.

Adults can find trusted websites that offer valuable information and resources that address cybersecurity issues. Avast has a website, social networks and a blog on these topics.

How to protect children while making friends online

Kids today connect with many people using a single device. And that means they might meet people who aren’t really who they say they are. Parents need to make sure their kids are chatting with people they really know. They have to talk about confidentiality, passwords or personal data are like a key to open the door to strangers. Adjusting social media privacy settings together and discussing their importance is a good start to keeping the door closed to third parties.

Parents should teach their children never to talk to anyone they don’t know in person and if anyone asks for their help, passwords or makes them feel uncomfortable, they should stop talking. interact and let it know immediately.

Cybercriminals may attempt to steal personal information, defraud or infect devices with malware by sending malicious links or attachments in emails (phishing) or via fake profiles. Antivirus software prevents hackers from attacking with these tactics.

How to use the Internet safely as an educational tool

Children can take advantage of the Internet for their learning by finding YouTube channels on topics that interest them and inspire them to pursue their goals, as well as a large library of educational content to help them with their homework and more resources.

Parental controls help parents configure websites, devices, or platforms like Netflix, Google, and YouTube that restrict their children from accessing explicit content, it’s a way to carefully and cautiously open the door to the digital world.

Have agreements and boundaries

Parents should establish agreements and limits on screen time, it is also healthy for your children to have leisure time away from the internet, disconnecting from digital life will also protect your mental health. Young children need special attention using phones, tablets and laptops, parents should let their children use them in common areas such as the living room to keep an eye on their activities.

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