Do Parents Need Cyber Safety Education?

Do Parents Need Cyber Safety Education?

Cyber Safety Quiz
Cyber Safety Quiz

Try This Quick Quiz!

  1. Which are the MOST popular apps used for cyber bullying and by predators 
  2. What is the most popular way to cyber bully?
  3. What education have you given your children to help PREVENT cyber bullying?
  4. What steps should you take if your child has been bullied online?
  5. Why is hiding your friends list on Facebook THE most important setting for Facebook?
  6. How do you hide your friends list on Facebook?
  7. Where is the hidden button to see what strangers can see about you on Facebook?
  8. Why is the “View As” Button on Facebook important to find?
  9. How do you turn off “In App Purchases” And why should you do that?
  10. What filtering settings to prevent your child view porn should you enable and where are they?
  11. How do you supervise your child online without spying?
  12. What techniques have you set up to help regulate screen time?
  13. How do you identify a “Safe” app?
  14. What safety settings have you enabled on your child’s BYOD for school?

These are some of the subjects that I cover in my “Digital Citizenship” and Cyber Safety educational presentations. If you can’t answer most of these questions correctly, then you absolutely need cyber safety education, as these issues are the absolute basics that parents need to know to protect and make the internet safer for their child. I cover all of these issues and more in a 90 min talk.

“I Work In I.T, so I don’t need Cyber Safety Education”

Doesn’t cut it either. What area of I.T? The expertise and experience that myself and other educators on Cyber Safety have is usually completely different from the type of knowledge that many Internet Technology professionals have. Cyber Safety education about safety and privacy settings, apps, and online behavior combined with actual real life examples that illustrate the problems that can occur when parents and children use the internet without education or regard to their safety, help to educate parents, students, teachers AND I.T experts about safe use of the internet.

My Kids Are Too Young

If you are a first time parent with younger children, then starting early on your digital education can save you heartache and nasty surprises later down the track as your young ones grow into teens. With kids as young as 3 years old using iPods and internet connected Tablets, it’s important that parents know how to set up these devices so that they are safe for their toddlers. Increasingly, children under 10 years old are using messaging apps and social media.

The School Is Taking Care Of Our Child’s Cyber Safety

AVG just released a study that showed that “Parents rely too much on schools to teach their children about online safety” clearly parents are overwhelmingly expecting schools to do the heavy lifting for cyber safety education. My first thoughts after reading this study was that firstly I wasn’t surprised at the results, it’s the same as what I’ve been hearing from schools where I present and teach. My second thought was that the larger issue is that parents simply don’t know why they should take responsibility for cyber safety at home, which is why they don’t turn up in significant numbers to Cyber Safety and Technology nights when they are offered.

Here’s why parents need to take responsibility for their children’s cyber safety

  • Most online cyber bullying and exposure to adult content and approaches by strangers occurs out of school hours and in home environments.
  • Kids are increasingly bringing adult content of a sexual/violent nature to school on their devices, both school laptops, mobile tablets and phones from home.
  • Teachers and schools cannot supervise their students online use when their students are at home with their parents.

How Can Teachers And Parents Receive Education?

Education on Cyber Safety in Australia is widely available through both private and government organizations to parents, teachers and students. But it’s possible that the education that some teachers are receiving is too general in nature or not recent enough to be able to be useful in regard to the issues they are dealing with on a daily basis with students. It may also be that many teachers are simply far too inexperienced with the online world to be able to take in much of the online safety education that they have access to.

I’ve read some suggestions that there should be dedicated cyber safety teachers employed in schools, in the same way as there are school nurses and school counselors. In my experience the I.T teachers who attend my talks, become the “Go To” teacher for cyber safety as they already have an advanced knowledge of software and technology and coupled with more in-depth cyber safety training can help students with more complex cyber safety issues. The hands on privacy and safety settings, workshops that I teach are one of the most valuable for I.T teachers. With the knowledge they receive they are then able to assist students who may need to block a bully online, or report a “Fake Account” used to bully them or adjust their privacy settings to help them use social media with more safety. If the issue is more complex, they often refer the parents to me directly to help, or approach the police.

If you want the answers to the Quick Quiz questions, make sure you book me for a talk/workshop, or come to one that is already arranged. You can also make a good start by purchasing my Cyber Safety Manual which has the answers to most of the questions in the above Quick Quiz!

So finally Do YOU Need Cyber Safety Education? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

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