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Teaching Your Kids about Online Safety

Your kids need to develop some online smarts about online conduct, even if you’ve set up parental controls on your Mac. You can share several basic tips with them to help keep them safe while searching online on your Mac.

Avoid lectures with threats of punishment, though. You want your child to feel safe coming to you if she encounters anything that feels creepy.

Remind your kids of the following rules:

  • Don’t tell people you meet online your last name, address, or phone number. Be careful if the online person asks a lot of questions about you, like where you go to school or what your parents do for a living.

  • Don’t tell anyone your password. No one should ever need it.

  • Sometimes people on the Internet pretend to be very different from who they really are. They may pretend to be an adult when they are really a child, or pretend to be a kid when they are really an adult. They may pretend to be a teacher or doctor or policeman when they are not. They may even pretend to be a girl when they are a boy or vice versa.

  • Never agree to see someone in person that you first met online without asking your parents first.

  • Remember that people can find out a lot about your family on the Internet. If someone you don’t know says he is a friend of your family and asks you to go with him, don’t go just because he seems to know a lot about you and your parents.

  • If someone is making you feel uncomfortable or scaring you, tell your parents. Especially be sure to tell them if the person asks you not to.

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