How to Protect Your Child from Cyber Crime/Cyber Bullying/Child Online Protection and Safety /Wonderful Tips for Parent/Guardian/Mother/Father

Smartphone is integral part of life. Our life solely depends on our Smartphone. We are most modern parents, enabled with 2GB internet data pack every day, having personal account on each and every ‘social networking sites i.e. Face book, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google Plus, and having different apps i.e. WhatsApp, Tiktok, BeautiPlus and many more based on personal interest. Whenever our child wants, we provide our own mobile to him. It is indeed wonderful. Wow! My lovely son/daughter is quietly using mobile. Children are very inquisitive. Generally, we observe that our children does not use mobile, in fact s/he explores the Smartphone i.e. all its downloaded applications or may be download new apps, and his favorite games. All of us may be/may not be thought much before handing over a Smartphone to our kids.    

Have you ever thought something negative before handing over your smart phone to your kids?  Have you ever bothered about some bad consequences before handing over your smart phone to your kids? Of course, the answer will be ambiguous. 1980s and 1990s born parents feel proud in sharing success story of their son’s/daughter’s skill of operating Smartphone efficiently with other relatives, friends, school teacher and principal. We may need to ask two essential questions to ourselves and our known people that is (1) Have you ever trained your kids for ‘how to use Smartphone’? (2) Has your daughter/son ever taught you ‘‘how to use Smartphone’?

So many parents read news paper on daily basis. They read news about ‘Cybercrime’ but never ever think to train their kids, ‘how to use Smartphone’ safely, how to do internet surfing safely and what are the things we should remember before clicking on unknown websites/downloading different apps’. Do we expect 4 years to 13 years old child to use ‘Smartphone’ judiciously? Have you ever inquired about the minimum age restrictions to open an account on different Social Sites? If a parent knows the minimum age restrictions to open an account on different Social Sites and suppose, s/he allows his kid (5-13 years old) to open an account on different Social platform then who will be held responsible for cybercrime.

  Diana Graber, Author, “Raising Humans in a Digital World” (HarperCollins Leadership/Jan. ‘19) stated in HuffPost that “the minimum age to open an account on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Kik, and Snapchat is 13. For Vine, Tinder and Yik Yak it’s 17. YouTube requires account holders to be 18, but a 13-year-old can sign up with a parent’s permission. Despite these clearly stated and published age restrictions, large and growing numbers of children 12 and under are using social media networks, often with their parent’s knowledge and consent.

Social sites provides wonderful opportunities for everyone(individual, personal/professional/businessmen)  to be connected with known and unknown people, however social media platform is also one of the most vulnerable place for performing different types of cybercrime. Generally a user puts all the personal information i.e. Real Name, Age, Mobile number, birthday, friends and family related information on different social media platform. In fact social sites like Facebook allows user to do some restrictions for others i.e. who will see your photos, but 90% user are not aware enough to read all the term and conditions, s/he just agrees with the term and conditions. Rest everything is controlled by the ‘default setting’.

Let us suppose! What will happen if:-

An untrained driver drives his/her car in a busy market,

An untrained pilot flights an airplane

An untrained person operates AK 47

The moment a child (6-13 years old) signs in Social Sites by putting wrong age number, s/he starts getting friends suggestions (who may be 18 years/above 18 years), and advertisement suggestion (Adult content/adult pictures/videos) that is not his/her age appropriate content.  A 10, 11, 12-13 years old gentle, generous and genuine girl may fall into the trap of an adult guy, may start believing his values, may start chatting on personal messenger and  may  start sharing some personal pictures/videos. These adulterous activities can lead to cyber crime, cyber bullying, cyber stalking, online sexual abuse, online sexual exploitation, child grooming and online commercial fraud.  

Paridhi -18 Months old baby girl-selects video on YouTube and watches

Smart parent have been providing Smartphone to his/her kids without providing enough knowledge of ‘netiquettes’ and ‘digital citizenship’. Can we stop our kids for using Smartphone enabled with 4G speed Internet Data Pack? The answer is obvious, ‘absolutely a big ‘No’. My next question to 2020 smart parent, can we educate our kids for using Smartphone smartly? Wise person will surely be against of banning use of mobile phone that is quite difficult and may be an impossible task for 21st century 4G generation children but they will surely support our fundamental point to educate and aware gentle kids “How to use Smartphone/World Wide Web (www)/Apps/Games judiciously” right from the age of 3 (if I am not wrong). Child starts framing ideas at the age of 3 (may be childish).

We teach our kids “Good Habits”, “Good Manner”, “Good Etiquette” and many more things right from the beginning. Should we not teach our “Digital kids” about the knowledge of ‘netiquettes’ and ‘digital citizenship’?  Parent can play crucial role than school and teacher because it is the parent who hands over mobile to his/her kids for various reason. I always face ridiculous moment when a child’s parent ask a teacher or school principal for reminding her son/daughter regarding not using too much mobile phone at home. Have you ever wisely thought about below mentioned questions?

  1. Who does give mobile to a kid? Teacher/ Principal/Parents/Mother/Father
  2. Who is the person at home who does hand over his mobile to 8 months, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5———-year’s daughter/son? Teacher/ Principal/Parents/Mother/Father

Child never shows rigidness for using a mobile in the school. A child spends almost 3-6 hours in a school and if we include total travelling time to and fro from school to home, it may be 4-8 hours. The question arises before a wise person that————

What does happen at home anonymously that provokes a child to use mobile phone without putting school bag at proper place/ without changing school uniform/without washing hand and mouth?  Being a wise parent if we find the answer of above mentioned questions; well and fine but if we wish to become a wise parent, we need to reflect the self for find out the solution of this problem.  A wise parent provides proper training to his kid to become an intelligent Smartphone user.

  1. Has s/he taken permission to use your mobile?
  2. Does s/he share the details of game usually he plays on your mobile?
  3. Do you notice the web portal s/he surfs usually?
  4. Do you notice the total time s/he spends on the mobile?   
  5. Have you shared the bad consequences of giving personal details to unknown websites?
  6. Have you shared with him ‘not to chat with unknown person at social sites?
  7. Have you asked him ‘not to make friends with unknown person at social sites?
  8. Have you shared with him ‘not to send personal and family pictures to unknown online friends at social sites?
  9. Have you shared with him ‘not to share ATM Password/ATM Pin number to unknown online friends at social sites/during downloading any apps/game?
  10. Have you shared with him ‘not to download so many apps without your permission’?
  11. Have you asked questions to your kids, if you find an account of your son/daughter on different social sites?
  12. Have you ever talked with your kids about cyber crime?
  13. Does your child know the meaning of cyber bullying cyber stalking, online sexual abuse, online sexual exploitation, online commercial fraud and child grooming?
  14. Have you ever discussed with your child that if someone tries to pressurize him online, asking for personal photographs, s/he should immediately report to you?

Self Introspection for Parents/Mother/Father/Guardian

  1. Do you know your child in a better way? Have you noticed something unique or unusual in your child?
  2. Do you give time to your child other than taking him/her for a trip, for lunch/dinner, and watching a film altogether?
  3. Do you talk to your child on daily basis? What does he think? What things do attract him? Does s/he face any difficulties these days?
  4. Does your child feel comfortable and confident in sharing good/bad feeling/emotions/problems with you without any hesitation?

Valuable Guidelines for Child Online Protection and Safety by NCPCR Guidelines

NCPCR Guidelines -Website

Educating our kids for using rational use of mobile phone can save the child, the family and society from cyber crime, cyber bullying, cyber stalking, online sexual abuse, online sexual exploitation, child grooming and online commercial fraud.  Raising awareness among boys and girls on how to safely navigate the online world is great task for 21st century educated world citizen. It is an integrated effort of parent, school teacher, principal, school, technical experts and law enforcement agencies to protect our genius kids from cyber bullying, cyber stalking, online sexual abuse, online sexual exploitation, child grooming and online commercial fraud. Of course, education for digital literacy, citizenship and safety will definitely bring a massive change and surely will save our child to become a victim of cyber crime world and its various forms.   

Rajeev Ranjan

  Read Valuable/Informative Articles Through Below Mentioned Link

Never Ever Feel Ashamed if You have caught in an online Trap——————————Student/Teacher/School/Parent/Guardian/Mother/Father/Brother/Sister Can Report Cyber Crime Related Issue to —-