All children need to be taught online safety best practices and they need to understand why and what the consequences could be if they compromise on internet safety rules. It is well worth it to take the time to explain to your kids the dangers of social networking, what can be done to avoid them and what steps to take when danger is noticed.
Where do you start?
Set some time aside and decide on how you will engage your child in taking precautions to keep safe online (educate them). I urge you to let your child watch these videos so they can realize internet safety for themselves and put it into their own perspective with you. Ensure that you have an open and trusted line of communication with your children so that they can talk to you about anything that makes them uncomfortable.
Explain to your kids what the negative consequences can be if they are not careful.
Give examples of how online predators can manipulate kids into bad situations.
Do your kids really know who they are talking to or is someone fooling them?
What to do if something happens?
In the instance of Facebook, BBM, Mixit, online games and so forth, if you suspect foul behaviour or realize someone to be an online predator discreetly obtain more info about them if you can, make a note of their details, ensure you report them to that social network and inform the relative authorities.
Contact SAPS or the Child Protection Unit. You can also email the CPU on firstname.lastname@example.org. For anonymous tipoffs you can also contact Crime Line and choose to sms them on 32211 or alternatively call on 08600 10111. For the United Kingdom report to the CEOP. The CEOP Centre is affiliated to the Serious Organized Crime Agency (SOCA). For global authority reporting contact the Virtual Global Taskforce and select which country is appropriate for you.
I sincerely hope this blog helps parents to better their kids knowledge of online safety and that it proves to be a valuable resource. Please do share any news you may have regarding this topic and feel free to inform us of alternate organizations that we may add that can assist children and parents in reporting and handling these threatening situations.
Blog by Daniela Bascelli
Daniela Bascelli (Social Media and Digital Marketing Strategist | Trainer at Onyx Digital Team). Follow Daniela on Twitter: @danielabascelli and follow the team @onyxdigitalteam. For more information on our upcoming social media training and service offerings, please contact us.
About Onyx Digital Team
The Onyx Digital Team is a group of social media and digital experts based in South Africa, dealing with local and international companies. We are available for global strategy consulting and training to assist clients in creating meaningful and interactive online relationships, adding value to their customers. With vast digital and social recruitment experience we have also become the “go to marketing strategists” in creating compelling online campaigns for launches and advertising. We also arrange social media teams at events to create content for social networks for added publicity and exposure.