Ever since COVID-19 has been declared a global pandemic, our lives have been turned upside down. From extended quarantines to distance learning for most students, it just seems this phase is not going to come to a screeching halt until the vaccine comes out.
The quarantine life and online learning have left most kids with no other option than to spend more time before their screens. In fact, they have been compelled to use the internet more than ever because of global pandemic. This means the more the time they spend online, the more they will likely come across online dangers.
In fact, federal agents have warned parents of a disturbing new trend in the middle ofthe pandemic. A rise in online predators has been witnessed during the Coronavirus outbreak. As kids spend more time on the internet, they will be likely to stumble upon sexual predators. This has given parents all the more reason to turn to the Android spy app or iPhone monitoring apps to track their kids’ online activities.
A Rise in Online Predators During Pandemic
It is arguable that the internet can be a dangerous place for everyone, especially young kids and teens. With kids having to spend more time in front of their screens due to the temporary closure of schools and boredom during the pandemic, it has become way easier for online predators to target them.
The internet and various social media platforms have encouraged sexual predators to strike young and innocent kids. They can reach out to kids through social media apps and gaming platforms. First, they develop a bond with them and later ask them to meet outside their homes.
In fact, it has been observed that most of the interactions with online predators lead to crimes linked with sextortion in which kids are forced into sending sexually explicit photos and videos of themselves.
We can’t even imagine how painful it can be for kids for being compelled to take inappropriate photos and videos of themselves and then coerced to share that content with online predators. After getting access to the content, predators can blackmail kids and their families and demand money from them. What’s worse, they can even sell the kid’s content to the dark internet for a hefty sum.
With kids surrounded by technology all day round especially in the times of COVID-19, parents have to be careful of their online interactions and activities and keep a check on them on a daily basis.
Protect Your Kids from Online Predators
Experts and federal agents have given some useful tips for parents to protect their kids from online predators amidst pandemic. By following these tips, you will be more likely to keep your kids safe from sexual predators lurking on the internet. Let’s take a look at them one at a time.
Set Internet Rules for Your Kids
The first step in protecting your kids from harmful online dangers including sexual predators should be setting some basic internet rules for your kids. Parents should always control the internet usage when it comes to their kids.
Several studies have proved that parents who control their kid’s internet usage tend to have the most resilient kids. You should control the amount of time your kids are spending on the internet, restrict sites and apps that aren’t suitable for them, and do not allow them to use their devices during specific times of the day such as bedtime, mealtime, etc.
Discuss Online Safety with Your Kids
It is important to have an open and honest discussion with your kids about online safety. You can start by informing them about their online rights and responsibilities. You can teach them how to use the internet safely and responsibly. Also, you can emphasize the importance of treating people well and getting treated right by others online.
You should educate your kids about harmful online dangers and how negatively they can impact their lives. You should also teach them about different strategies to stay safe from those online dangers. Make sure to set some reasonable rules so your kids do not feel encaged. Last but not least, make them feel comfortable around you so they can come to you when they experience something bad on the internet.
Encourage Them to Block Users Who Don’t Seem Right
Kids love to try different social media apps. As soon as a much-hyped social media app comes into the market, kids insist on downloading and using that app. Be sure to explore that app with your kids and understand what it is all about.
Before allowing your kids to spend time on that app, you must educate yourself on that app. Learn everything about the app including its privacy settings. You should also learn how to report or block a user that doesn’t seem right to your kids. Teach your kids how to report or block users on a certain social media app. If someone makes your kid comfortable on a certain social media platform, they should immediately report or block them.
Use Parental Monitoring Apps for Your Kid’s Safety
We cannot stress the importance of using parental monitoring apps on your kid’s phone. These apps are used for their online safety. With these apps installed on your kid’s phone, you can track their online chats and activities and find traces of something unusual on their device, if any.
Most kids do not want their parents to invade their online privacy. In that case, you can consider using the hidden spy apps for Android or iPhone if you want to monitor their online activity without them knowing and making them feel offended.
Only You Can Be Your Kid’s Online Protector
We do believe that you can keep your kids protected from online dangers and sexual predators by using parental monitoring apps. However, you should never solely rely on these solutions when it comes to your kid’s online safety.
You must remember that only you are your child’s protector. Nobody else will come to their rescue. You need to closely watch out your kid’s behavior to see if there are any signs of online abuse. Your kid’s body language will tell you everything about how they are feeling. You must make your kids confide in you with your love, care, and understanding so that they can come to you if something bad happens to them online.
No one can look after your kid’s online safety except for you. Always remember that. If you feel the matter is slipping out of your hands, you must report the incidents to trusted authorities.