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Family Internet Safety

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Some things I think all of us should know.

 Don’t rush your children into social media. Obey the guideline of keeping children under 13 off social media. Once your children have an online profile, they can be tagged in photos, which magnifies their online presence. If you’re going to upload photos of them, don’t identify them and don’t tag them. This way the photo can’t be traced back to them.

 Myth: Parental controls are the best way to monitor my childs online activities.
Truth: Focusing on only one Internet safety method lulls you into a false sense of security. Keep your child safe online and to raise them to be responsible, respectful digital citizens. But it takes more than installing parental controls.

For starters, parental controls can be defeated by determined even PC novice child. Plus they also often catch too much in their filters, rendering any Internet reasonable search useless. To top all this off they often set up a “parent vs. child” dynamic that could and probably will backfire.

 But by all means, use parental controls to help prevent exposure to age-inappropriate material and to manage time limits.
But don’t think parental controls get you off the hook and your done any any means. Continue to discuss responsible, respectful online behavior, set rules and consequences for misbehavior, and teach your child to manage his or her own usage without overdoing it.
This will in the long run be best and safest for you and you child.
Other things you can teach you child and do for yourself for safety on your PC are.

  • Use privacy settings. Make sure your privacy settings are set so only the closest people in your network can view your posts.
  • Limit your audience. Only share posts with close family and friends. Or use photo-sharing sites such as Picasa and Flickr that require a log-in to see pics.
  • Avoid installing unnecessary applications for your current desktop tasks, such as: background servers, file sharing software or remote control applications (especially as most users forget they have these applications started in the background). These programs are potential hazards and should not be installed unless absolutely necessary.
  • Use a reliable firewall solution. Use a firewall that can control the Internet traffic in both directions (what comes and goes from your computer).
  • Update your applications as often as possible. Operating systems may become vulnerable to threats for which the vendor has already found the solution.
  • Do not open e-mails coming from unknown senders, many viruses spread via e-mail, so ask for a confirmation from the sender if you are in doubt.
  • Avoid opening email attachment files with the extension .bat, .pif, .com, .vbs, .vba, .scr, .hlp, .hta, .lnk, .url, .cmd, because these types of files are usually 100% malware.
  • Do not open attachments of messages with a suspicious or unexpected subject, but if you want to open them, first save them to your hard disk and scan them with an updated antivirus program.Do not forward unknown emails and do not reply to their sender. These types of messages are considered spam, because they are not desired and asked for.
  • Banks and serious institutions will not require personal information by email. Do not pay attention to such messages, are counterfeit and fraudulent. Any message related to earnings, cash request and donations are 100% phishing attacks.
  • When you click a link, make a habit to look at the addressbar, see if the domain name has the same name as the institution which you expect or know, eg for Microsoft page you can find the domain microsoft.com or http://www…….microsoft.com/…… but NOT www.microsoft…….com, etc. Any domain name which looks like the example above, it is 100% a pharming attack.
  • Credit card sites, banking sites and online stores should have a lock on their websites that shows they are encrypted, this is shown in the address bar after the page loads.
  • Do not post personal email addresses on the Internet, most of email addresses posted on websites are used by spammers to send unsolicited emails.
  • Do not copy any file unless you know the source.
  • Protect yourself from logic bombs by creating backup files of important personal documents, like MSOffice or Adobe documents, pictures, correspondence etc. Do this regularly. Store these backups on removable media such as CDs, DVDs because they are Read-Only.
  • Most times, malware like viruses, trojans, rootkits or hidden remote admin programs, are injected through exploits from websites containing illegal material, such as pirated software which mimics real commercial applications, or websites containing pornographic materials.
  • Stick with software recommended by legitimate download sites.
  • Don’t assume that files from people you know are safe!
  • Total Security Antivirus software is must-have protection. Keep it enabled and updated at all times.
  • I will post more rantings about the net later on thanks,

    mongo