Page 2 - An Important Note About Internet Safety
Being an active participant in your child’s use of technology is not only best practice from a developmental viewpoint but it provides an excellent opportunity to filter content and to engage in discussions about Internet safety. Be mindful that many websites, software programs, and applications will have advertisements and/or external links you may find to be inappropriate for your child.
It is always a good idea to test new websites or software to check for the possibility of inappropriate content before using them with children. However, there may be situations when you are unable to prevent exposure to unsuitable content. For example, if you are using the Internet to help your child find information through a search engine, you can’t always anticipate what results may be displayed. The good news is that there is software available that can help filter and block inappropriate content from websites; however, this software isn’t always 100% effective. This type of software is often referred to as “parental monitoring software” and is a good place to start when engaging Internet safety protocols. Even when taking necessary precautions, engaging in discussions about Internet safety is a great way to prepare children to use the Internet responsibly to support educational goals.
It is also important for all Internet users to consider what information is posted over the Internet through e-mail, social media, blogging, and other websites. Information shared online has the potential to be accessed by anyone and used for unintended purposes. It is important to pause before posting pictures of children, sharing details about where they go to school or engage in after-school activities. Think critically about who can view the information and what type of information is being provided to others. Consider having conversations with your family and friends to express your concerns about sharing your child’s information online, so they can support your efforts to protect your child’s safety. The Internet is a powerful communication tool, but it is important to understand the risks and make smart decisions about Internet use.
* Fairfax County is committed to nondiscrimination in all county programs, services and activities. To request reasonable accommodations or to receive this information in an alternate format, call 703-324-8100 or TTY 711.