It looks like virtual learning in here to stay, at least in some capacity. Most adults receive on-the-job training regarding cyber security, but we are hearing most schools aren’t providing cyber security training.  Here are some tips on how to train your kids, and also institute computer controls for when they go rouge.

  1. Talk to them. We are expecting most teenagers to roll their eyes, because they know more about the internet than we do, right? A refresher won’t hurt anyone. Remind them that stranger-danger is the same online as it is in person. Do not share full names, address, phone numbers, the name of the school they go to, or photos. To take it a step further, remind them not to share their social security number, passwords, or banking information. If you do allow them to make online purchases, review the difference between  a secure website and a non-secure website. Here is a little refresher from Google on Social engineering and how to avoid online scams.
  2. Set boundaries.  Be clear on what they can and can’t explore.  Create a list together of appropriate sites and post it next to the computer for reference.  Go a step further and protect them with tools like SafeSearch, which filters out adult content. 
  3. Limit ads.  Ads can have a surprising amount of inappropriate content and can pull you down a rabbit hole into click-bate and dangerous sites (we’ve all been there!).  Buy the paid versions of their favorite aps to avoid ads altogether when they are playing games and install a free ad blocker like Ad Block Ultimate
  4. Discuss email and phishing scams.  Have your kids learn proper email protocols to avoid phishing attempts. Don’t open an email from someone you don’t know. Don’t open an attachment you weren’t expecting. Hover over links before you click them to make sure they are a legitimate link. Don’t reply to spam. Change your password frequently. Find a free training and test here.
  5. Accidents are going to happen. No one is perfect, and we have to allow for mistakes to happen. Set up protection for your home computer and network. Beyond keeping them safe, you also want to keep your computer, home network and digital information safe.  Install a firewall and antivirus software.