SoftActivity
May 20th, 2015

Monitoring Student Computer Safety

Monitoring Student Computer Safety

In today’s society, Internet crime is one of the biggest concerns in households across the world. Many individuals have been cheated from predatorswho take advantage of their innocence. Since children are able to get into chat rooms, dating sites and social media networks, they are prone to all of the dangers on the Internet. Parents are more fearful than ever before because of cases where children go missing after talking with strangers online. Recent studies at MSU show that amongst all of those who fall prey to crimes on the Internet, the largest number of individuals are teenagers and students.

Monitoring Children: Why Do It?

Don’t assume the Internet is nothing more than a virtual world. More than enough instances exist where relationships can be formed online. If an adult can become the victim of Internet predators, children and teenagers are that much easier to take advantage of. Parents need to be on the lookout for the risks an online predator poses to their children. They use tactics to draw children in and gain their trust. When least expected, the predator will strike and cause damage. For those who fail to monitor the activities of their children online, they may be a lot farther into it once it becomes apparent that something is wrong.

Consider the following facts when it comes to monitoring children online:

  • Studies indicate that one out of every five victims is a teenager.
  • In situations where a predator sends sexual content to the child, only a quarter of those children will let their parents know about it.
  • More than three-quarters of all children will provide their personal information through social media networks, which is only inviting more danger to their doorstep.
  • Many of the online predators are young individuals who are able to easily gain trust with children and teenagers.

Using Technology to Monitor Children Online

If technology can be used to divert someone from following the right path, the same can be done to make sure they stay on the right path. Technology can be used for preventing children from becoming the victims or immoral acts online. Parents can implore the use of a number of services and products for tracking their children’s activities online, as well as where they are physically. Common types of technology for keeping an eye on children are:

  • GPS systems allow the parents to locate their children through tracking their phones. Regardless of where children are, it only takes a moment to locate them with this device.
  • Rescue Time software allows parents to track the sites that their children visit online. It saves records that can be viewed later on to determine where their children are going online.
  • Stealth mode is a type of program that lets parents view the activities of their children in secret.
  • Spy Cobra surveillance systems allow parents to download any keystrokes children type on the keyboard. All of the information gathered is hidden and saved so that it can only be accessed by plugging in a special USB drive that is configured to work with the software.

Don’t Forget About Monitoring the Cell Phone

In today’s day and age, children tend to use their cell phones as if they are their lifeline. Sending text messages is like second-nature to them. Instead of having to worry about who children are talking to on their phone, parents are able to monitor the text messages their children receive, as well as their phone calls. This allows parents to know whenever their children are receiving messages or calls from someone who is not on their approved list.

Online Activity Should Not be Overlooked

Parents need to pay attention to the activities of their children online. Continuously check on their friend’s list through their social networking sites. Monitor their accounts and the information that they are sharing with others online. This allows parents to make sure children are not divulging confidential and personal information through social network sites.

Parents can utilize tools online like Paralert that allows them to scan all the activities of their children on social networking sites. The program sends emails and SMS messages to the parents on a regular basis. Another alternative is to review the child’s browsing history. Using Internet Explorer, click on the star icon in the left-hand corner at the top of the screen. Click on history and check their browsing history. Since some children are more tech-savvy, this is not always a reliable option. They can delete their browsing history before logging out to prevent anyone from tracking their online activities.

By Frank Winston, SoftActivity
Photo by Extra Ketchup