Well I assume you all have watched Chris Hanson with Dateline on television. Yes he corners these monsters who prey on children through the Internet.
The sad truth is most of these abuse cases are not reported and these children are emotionally and physically damaged for life. Even if a child does not end up physically meeting a predator like in the show, they can still get emotionally and sexually abused.
Your child can be emotionally and sexually abused through e-mail, chat rooms, downloads and pornographic sites. As fathers you can not be so naive to think that sexual and emotional abuse can not happen to your child. You need to Get Involved and Stay Informed on all aspects of your child's life.
Dad's Tips For Internet Safety
There are many things you can do to keep your child safe. One is prohibit all Internet surfing unless it is directly related to school work. Many Dads have decided this was their best course of action. Their take on it was that their children were endangering themselves and at the same time are not getting enough physical activity in front of the computer. This also seems to tie in with the dilemma of the rise in cases of childhood Obesity. You do not have to be a scientist to recognize the correlation between the rise in obesity and the decrease in physical activity since the computer and electronic game industry came into effect.
Another options to protect your children on the Internet is to install monitoring and/or safety programs on your home computer. These programs are out there and are advertised widely, and I am not going to recommend any specific one. All of the major players out there like Microsoft, Yahoo, etc. have programs that help safeguard your children. In addition, you can set most browsers to prohibit sexual content and bad language.
The best option is to talk with your children. Sit them down and explain that there are dangerous people in cyberspace that are preying on children. Tell them you love them and are concerned. Devise a plan together which will safeguard them and make them an active part of the safety plan. Make an agreement with them that that they must adhere to. This is often an affective way to deal with situations like these. Children want to have a role and feel important. This is a great way to give them that role and to keep them safe.. Get creative and draw a contract up with them over a bowel of cereal. Discuss it and shake hands and sign it. Make a copy for them and recommend they post it next to their computer. Renew it every 15 days to keep it fresh and reinforce their compliance. In addition, keep the agreements (rules) and the consequences fresh by disuciing them as well at every contract renewel meeting. Reinforce your child's active participation in this endeavor regularly.
Dad's Internet Contract
Contract Renewal Date ________________________________
Something happened to me yesterday that reminded me of the importance of creating more difficult passwords, and making sure that they are well protected. When I loaded one of my websites, I saw a nasty little note from my web host, stating that my account had been suspended.