We've all heard the stories. A child meets
someone online that pretends to be another child, and sneak
off to meet them only to be kidnapped, molested, and/or killed.
But it isn't always as straightforward as that. There are many
things children can be exposed to that will harm them in more
subtle ways as well.
Children can very easily stumble into websites that show graphic
pornography. Unlike the old danger of a child finding magazines,
the images and sites available online include such things as
graphic sex acts, video, and extreme perversions including torture
and bestiality. This can happen much by accident, as simply
searching for innocent terms on search engines may have the
results mislead to sites that redirect you to pornography sites.
and Cult Sites
The Internet has given a very large audience to people espousing
extremely hateful, bigoted, and violent topics. On the Internet
you can find many racist groups and violent protest groups.
Children can even find step by step instructions on making bombs
and other tools of violence.
Deception by Others
It is very easy to pretend to be something you are not on the
Internet. You can even offer to send a "picture" of
yourself to prove you are a child, teen, etc. Of course, you
can send any actual picture you want. Children are very trusting
in general and more apt to believe what seems to be a truth.
Children can be mislead by other children or adults wishing
to do them hard or exploit them. Child pornographers, molesters,
and even cults recruit children off the Internet.
So you say your child wouldn't have the ability to meet someone
on their own without your knowledge? They don't have to. An
11 year old can easily let enough information slip for someone
to appear at their school and pretend to be a family friend
(giving enough info gleaned to pass the charade off).
The first thing you must do is be an active
guardian while your child is on the Internet. Internet access
is not a baby-sitter. If you are not prepared to properly watch
over your child while they are accessing the Internet then it
should not be allowed in your house. Children are curious by
nature. You are the best judge of your child, but even the most
trustworthy child can still encounter bad content by accident.
There two approaches. The first is to surf the Internet together
and lock the computer securely when you are not around. The
other method is to install filters and guards, and have any
access to chat logged and filtered.
If your child must chat, then look into
AOL as your Internet access provider. They have setting that
you can restrict your child to moderated chat rooms only. Make
sure Immediate messaging is turned off and only allow e-mail
from confirmed addresses that you know. The filtering tools
on AOL make it an excellent option for parents that can not
watch over their children on the Internet 100% of the time.
Another option is to purchase and install
the many filters available for filtering content on the web.
Be careful about exposing to much information
about yourself and your family online. Many people have registered
sites that tell all about their family. In addition to exposing
information that could lead to people breaking your passwords,
you could also provide information for predators to use to get
to you or your children. If someone says they are a family friend
and know a bunch of personal information about you and your
children, your child could be persuaded to go with the predator.
Use a code word system with your child. In case of emergency,
your child should not go with anyone that does not know the
Watch your child's school as well. Many schools inadvertently
publish too much information about children online. Check your
school's website constantly, and if they are exposing too much
information, have them contact us for safety education that
they can use and that they can disseminate to the other parents.
The Internet and computer, like TV should
not consume a child's time. Yes, as parents, it is nice to have
peace and quiet, but your child needs to build social skills.
The Internet is not the place to do that.
If you find yourself intimidated by computers,
check out local classes. Often times, computer training facilities
offer free Internet access classes. Local technical colleges
and community colleges offer help as well.
Set your computer up in a public family
area, so your child can not work on the computer unseen. The
bedroom is the worst place to put your child's computer.
Watch your child online, or use AOL with
the advanced filtering if that is not possible.
Do not let your children chat online unless
it is monitored in some way. IRC is not the place for children
under any circumstances unless you are sitting with them.
Teach your child the dangers of the Internet
and make sure they feel comfortable telling you about any problems
they may have.
Set strict limits on the amount of time
your child spends online.
Never give out any information about yourself:
real name, address, school, work, telephone number or unmonitored
e-mail addresses. Remember that if you have a domain name of
your own it takes about 60 seconds to find the name address
and phone number for the person that registered the site.
Do not complete profiles that some online
The Internet can be strongly addictive
to people that may feel detached from society or lonely. Many
children going through normal insecurities may find the anonymity
strongly addictive. Enforce limits.
Remember, if you do not understand how
to properly monitor your child on the computer, do not trust
your child to do it for you. Get help.
The links below are for software to enable
you to monitor & or log your childs activity on the Internet
and also the ability to block services such as MSN, ICQ, AIM,
FTP and more.
Sentinel Filtering Software
Cyber Sentinel is the most advanced
child protection software package available. As parents,
we cannot be present to continuously monitor a childs
computer activity. Cyber Sentinel was designed with this
in mind and it provides a unique proactive model for analyzing,
monitoring, filtering, and blocking undesirable, predatory,
and sexually explicit computer traffic. Cyber Sentinel is
a different approach to traditional site blocking technology
by protecting children in any on-line activity and to giving
parents a visual record of explicit communications or ventures
into adult areas. This includes: chat rooms, news groups,
email, instant messaging, sexually explicit web sites, downloaded
documents, and even documents attached to email. Our child
predator library is a feature that was developed in conjunction
with several law enforcement agencies. The words and phrases
used in this library are taken from actual on-line investigations.
If predators are a concern, simply enable the child predator
Find Out What Your Family Is Doing
IamBigBrother 7.3 will monitor your
children in Instant Messages, Chats, Emails, Web Site
URLs and much more while undetected from the user. We
test many of these and this is the best one available
today. Not only do you see what your child types online
but what is said back as well. It monitors both incoming
and outgoing activity - no other program offers this
With four distinct recording tools,
Spector Pro is the quickest, easiest and most detailed
way to monitor and record Internet and PC activity. All
four tools are combined into one powerful application
featuring: the original Spector VCR-like snapshot recording
and the new Email recording, Chat/Instant Messaging logs
and sophisticated Keystroke journals.
In addition to monitoring and recording,
Spector Pro has an advanced warning system that will inform
you when a PC being monitored has been used in an inappropriate
manner. Through the use of keywords that you specify,
Spector Pro will be "on alert", emailing you
an immediate and detailed report of when, where and how
a keyword was used - every time it is typed or appears
on the PC, on a website or in an email.
Combine visual snapshot recording, email
recording, chat recording and keystroke recording with
INTELLIGENT & INSTANT Notification when content you
specify is encountered, and you have the most POWERFUL
Monitoring and Surveillance software you can buy anywhere!