With the extent of information available on the Internet, it’s important to do your job as a parent and ensure your children are browsing the Internet safely. You need to be informed and ensure that your child is well aware of the dangers of communicating online. Take a look at some of the statistics below (Source: Crimes Against Children Research Center factsheet & FBI Parents Guide to Internet Safety) related to the dangers your children face while surfing the net:

  • There are more than five million online predators targeting children between 10-14 years old.
  • There’s almost a 100% chance that your child will encounter an online predator while chatting online.
  • About ¼ of the children that ended up communicating with a sexual predator told their parents.
  • It takes between two to four weeks for a sexual predator to lure your child from a strictly online relationship to a personal, one on one meeting.
  • More than 60% of the websites online have some form of elicit, pornographic content.
  • Only 15% of children said their parents know the sites they visit online and regular monitor them using the computer.
  • 1/2 of all children have dealt with bullying online and 25% of them have had to endure it repeatedly.
  • Almost ¾ of all children lured by sexual predators were teens between twelve and fifteen. About 30% of them began communication through social networking.
  • Over 70% of children receive messages online from people they do not know.
  • Almost 70% of children, both boys and girls, admitted to sending nude and semi nude photos and sexually explicit messages to friends.

    With such shocking statistics, it’s surprising that so many parents are still unaware of what their children are doing while spending hours in front of their computers and surfing the Internet from their smart phones. With so many resources available to parents today, it has become easier to keep track of your child’s whereabouts online, even without them knowing about it. There are countless Internet monitoring software programs that will keep track of sites your children visit, messages they are sending and even what they are writing and posting on social media sites.

    Social Media Monitoring: Twitter, Facebook etc.

    True Care: Social Media Monitoring software

    I have been using the same software, True Care, for years and believe whole heartedly that it helps me keep my child safe while using the Internet. There are many programs out there so do your research and choose the best one to suit your family’s needs.

    True Care is a program that offers a wide variety of useful features when it comes to social media monitoring. It helps protect your children from potentially dangerous interactions on Facebook, YouTube, MySpace and Twitter.

    It is specifically for monitoring one of the most dangerous aspects of the Internet, social media networks. True Care provides email alerts that send you notifications of any suspicious online behavior. With this software, you’ll be able to access names, pictures and profiles of all friends on your children’s Facebook page and other social media outlets. It also features access to screening tools that help identify online predators before they contact your child further. With True Care, you’ll be able to monitor your child’s online social media usage and communication regardless of the computer or mobile device they are accessing it from.

    If you have a difficult time understanding what your children are writing online, possibly because of the slang terms they use or the words common in teenage language, True Care can help. It provides an online dictionary that is updated regularly with commonly used slang terms and acronyms. This program is also very easy to use, even if you are not so computer literate. It also provides a 30 day risk free trial.

    Get More Tips on Your Child’s Safety Online

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation also offers helpful tips and plenty of education for parents to help keep their children safe online. By going to their page, you can learn about signs to look for that your child may be at risk online, what you should do if you suspect your child is communicating with an online predator and how to minimize the possibility that your child will fall prey to an online predator in the future.

    Take advantage of any and all resources available to protect your children. There are many available and they are all available at your finger tips from your computer or mobile device. For more information and statistics on crimes against children, visit the Crimes Against Children Research Center.