Educational CyberPlayGround ®

Internet Safety Rules For Parents
learn how to keep children safe on the Internet.

Find the tools that a parent needs to supervise and keep children and teenagers safe on the internet.



Trouble Areas
for kIDS


"The Court previously took judicial notice that every computer is manufactured with an on/off switch, that parents may utilize, in the end, to control the information which comes into their home via the Internet."
~ Judge Arthur J. Tarnow, in Cyberspace v. Engler

Parents have the authority under the law to access their children's stored communications. The United States is a common law country. Common law means that the courts help make law by interpreting the laws written by the legislature. This is why you hear lawyers reciting case names when arguing for their clients. They are arguing what is called case law. The case law on snooping on kids centers on taping phone conversations rather than accessing stored communications, but the court would use the same logic in a stored communications case.

In a 1998 court case Pollock v. Pollock, the court used the concept of vicarious consent to justify the interception of a minor child's conversation. Recording of conversation is permitted when one of the parties involved consents to the recording. Vicarious consent occurs in this context when a parent consents to wiretapping on behalf of their child and when the parent's snooping is motivated by the genuine, good faith concern for the child's welfare. Therefore, if a parent is acting in the best interest of the child, courts should find that snooping is justified and allowable by law because the parent is consenting to their own snooping.

Is surveillance the best way to protect children? Or should parents trust them to share if they are scared or bewildered by something online? The average American family uses five Internet-enabled devices at home, including smartphones, a recent survey by Cox Communications and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children found, while barely one in five parents uses parental controls on those devices. 2012 The next version of Apple's mobile operating system will offer a single-app mode so a parent can lock a toddler into one activity on an iPad. Toddlers shouldn't be on an iPad it is bad for their brain. See Brain Development


Kids should learn that they will be monitored throughout their lives: It's not any different from any employer. Kids know that having their parents monitor what they do makes them think twice about what they post for public consumption. Kids may also interpret this as a lack of trust -- which of course it is.
The anxieties of parenting in the digital age have spawned a mini-industry, as start-ups and established companies market new tools to track where children go online, who they meet there and what they do. Because children are glued to smartphones, the technology can allow parents to track their physical whereabouts and even monitor their driving speed.
Pew Research Center, have found that 2/3s of parents check their children's digital footprints and nearly 40% follow them on Facebook and Twitter. But the Pew study suggests that this monitoring is also likely to lead to arguments between parent and child.
There is an app for every device that children are using, that will gather intelligence on them wherever they go.
Smartphone applications can alert Dad if his son is texting while driving. An online service helps parents keep tabs on every chat, post and photo that floats across their children's Facebook pages. Even on Facebook, studies have repeatedly shown, there are plenty of children younger than 13, the minimum age for members., which combs through the Facebook page and text messages. UKnowKids sends mom alerts about inappropriate language. It also offers a dashboard of the child's digital activities, including what the child says on Twitter, whom she texts and what photos she is tagged in on Facebook. It translates teenage slang into plain English she can understand: “WUD” is shorthand for “What are you doing?” Symantec and Trend Micro offer computer software that detects when a child tries to visit a blocked Web site or creates a new social network account. Infoglide, introduced MinorMonitor, which like UKnowKids mines children's Facebook pages for signs of trouble. textPlus application for the iPhone allows the parent to be copied on every text message thier teenager sends. Parental controls on the iPhones will stop kids from downloading applications. Access to the app store on the Kindle Fire is protected with a password.

A maker of educational mobile applications is the target of a suit by the New Jersey attorney general charging it violated a federal law designed to protect children's online privacy. Teachme, made by 24x7digital LLC, is a series of apps for the iPhone, iPad and iTouch that feature educational games geared to children ranging in age from pre-school to about 7 or 8. They allegedly encouraged users to create player profiles with their first and last names, which were then transmitted along with a "unique device identification number" to Flurry Inc., a data analytics company. The state says the procedure, done without providing notice on its website or obtaining parental consent, violated the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act.

Strategic Objectives" for children's online safety:

Kids are taught to "manage their own online behavior." In other words, by teaching our children respect, civility and citizenship online as well as off, we improve their chances for safe, constructive, and productive use of the Net and mobile phones.

  1. "Reduce availability [of harmful contact and contact to online kids] ... and the conduciveness of platforms to harmful and inappropriate conduct"
  2. "Restrict access ... and reduce ... harmful and inappropriate conduct"
  3. "Increase resilience: Equip children to deal with exposure to harmful and inappropriate content and contact, and equip parents to help their children deal with these things and parent effectively around incidences of harmful and inappropriate conduct by their children.

In many families, these problems are solved with good parenting skills, and establishing trust and limits. But even strong parents could use some technological help.

Dangers for Kids with Ipads- touch-screens known as iPad-kids or digital kids the isolated generation can hardly bear complicated social challenges if their thinking models are shaped by software programs. Children are becoming more selfish and not willing to share with others,indulging themselves more in the virtual world with no practical cooperation and communication with their peers. During the period when a child's brain develops rapidly, electronic devices can isolate him or her from reality, having a kind of self sealing effect. In some schools, the iPad or other electronic devices are more than an entertainment tool, but a way of life for those who have one or more.


The bottom line is that your kids do NOT have a right to privacy when it comes to internet or computer use, and you as a parent have a right and a responsibility to see to it that they're not getting into anything they shouldn't be getting into.

If it's illegal offline, it's illegal on the Web. Children from 0 - 16 are entitled to exactly as much privacy as they can safely handle. In the case of the Internet, that means none. Children should be told up front that their communications will be monitored on an ongoing basis. This is a condition of their use of the Internet. If they don't like it, they can find something else to do with their time.

Parents need to know where their children are, who they are hanging out with at all times. The internet is the same as mall or anwhere else on earth. Parents are allowed to know where their child is on the internet and what they are doing there. And it's pretty easy to keep them in line, because the alternative for them is to not be permitted to use your machine -- end of story.

Services that help parents protect children's privacy online are SafetyWeb and SocialShield.

Too many parents are afraid to take control of their child's computer. They're afraid of their kids. They somehow think because technology is involved, they're no longer the parent. You're the parent. If you don't like it, unplug the computer. If they don't follow your rules, no Internet at all. If you're not the parent and if you're not going to step in, no Web site on earth is going to be able to help your child be safe.

Try Googling "evercookie" you'd be really surprised An evercookie is a persistent cookie that uses numerous clever techniques to avoid full deletion by the user. Think of it as a "super-cookie" that can be used to track your online activities even though you have taken steps to protect yourself, and you think you are protected against tracking. Using Safari's private browsing mode defeats the evercookie system and prevents evercookies from being used between browsing sessions. On first glance, it appears that Chrome's Incognito scheme will make you safe from evercookies.

is a simple productivity tool designed to block those time-wasting sites that can suck the life out of your working day. (You know: the ones that rhyme with 'Blue Cube', 'Pie Face', 'Space Hook', 'Hash Pot', 'Sticky Media', and the like.) All you need to do is specify which sites to block and when to block them.
You can specify up to six sets of sites to block, with different times and days for each set. You can block sites within fixed time periods (e.g., between 9am and 5pm), after a time limit (e.g., 10 minutes in every hour), or with a combination of time periods and time limit (e.g., 10 minutes in every hour between 9am and 5pm). You can also set a password for access to the extension options, just to slow you down in moments of weakness!

Better Privacy serves to protect against not deletable longterm cookies, a new generation of 'Super-Cookie', which silently conquered the internet. This new cookie generation offers unlimited user tracking to industry and market research. Concerning privacy Flash- and DOM Storage objects are most critical.
This addon was made to make users aware of those hidden, never expiring objects and to offer an easy way to get rid of them - since browsers are unable to do that for you. Flash-cookies (Local Shared Objects, LSO) are pieces of information placed on your computer by a Flash plugin. Those Super-Cookies are placed in central system folders and so protected from deletion.


Take computers out of the bedrooms and put them in the living room or where the parents are. Mobile phones and interactive consoles should also be kept downstairs in case they contain viruses.


  • Discover the internet Together
  • Agree to the rules for internet use
  • Encourage your child to be careful when disclosing personal information.
  • Talk about the risks of meeting an online friend face to face
  • Teach your child to be critical of online sources
  • Parents please sit down with your kids at the computer and teach them to recognize ads.
  • Remember, the computer is like TV. Is everything on your TV appropriate for your child? Teach them to be aware of all media.
  • Empowerment & Convergence Dialogue
    Look at a Ratings chart that will tell Parents how to use the warning labels and what they look like to give them the tools to decide if their child is old enough to be using/buying the product. Full Guide
  • Don't be too critical of your child's web browsing
  • Report illegal online material to the police
  • Encourage good Netiquette
  • Know your children's net use
  • Remember that the positive aspects of the internet outweigh the negatives.

Jakob Nielsen released “Usability of Websites for Children,” debunks a number of myths about how children (ages 5-11) navigate through sites. Summary:

  • Kids aren't naturally skillful on computers.
  • Kids are literal thinkers, they won't scroll down the page. It's “out of sight, out of mind.”
  • Kids get more confused than their parents becuase they actually read directions.
  • Learning is their job and they are only willing to read a paragraph or so.
  • Kids don't distinguish between ads and content. To them, it's all information.
  • Kids click on ad banners all the time.
  • Kids ignore error messages and go someplace else.
  • Sights are easier to use when they have highest degree of compliance with standard guidelines for Web usability.
  • kids resist attempts to get personal information, are aware of privacy issues, and that they shouldn't give out their name or phone number.

Kids sites are hard to use when:

  • Designers make controls too complicated
  • interface is too busy
  • confusing vocabulary describing options
  • everything was dumbed down for kids which wasn't necessary

These things need to be supervised !!

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