1. Talk to your children about basic rules to use while on the internet. Set up family guidelines to follow.
2. Consider using filters on your computer. Filters may be available through your Internet Service Provider or through a search engine such as Google. Filters will help keep your children safe from harmful sites. This will also allow you to block websites you wish your children not to get into as well as keep track of which sites they get into.
3. Set up your computer with internet access in an open public room, such as living room, family room, kitchen. Avoid positioning a computer in a private area such as a child's bedroom, or an out-of the way place like a basement.
4. Limit the amount of time your child uses the internet. Set a time schedule for students to use. Too much use of computer time can affect a child's eyesight. Exercise, and spending family time talking are a couple of ways to make sure your children are maintaining a well-rounded lifestyle.
5. Remind your children the importance of the internet. The Internet is a great source for finding information and possibly meeting new friends. Explain the importance of on-line safety and to never give out personal information to strangers, such as name, address, phone numbers, credit card numbers, where they go to school, where their parents work and when they work, etc.
6. If your child accesses a chat room, ALWAYS make sure you know when and who they are chatting with. A child should NEVER access a chat room without their parent's permission. Keep your child away from "stranger danger". The world wide web is a great tool, however, children need to be aware there are predators that try to gain and find information on children.
7. ALWAYS watch for cyberbullying. Having family visit times daily help you check in with your child. Cyberbullying is when one person threatens or harasses another while chatting on-line. This can lead to serious problems at home, school, and in the real world. Cyberbullying can also lead to charges filed by another and possible criminal arrests if one makes threats. Explain to your children to always tell you when someone cyberbullies them.