The world has become a smaller place with the advent of the internet. People from different parts of the world stay connected via the internet. Accessing tools, videos, music and gaining in-depth knowledge of anything is just a click away in this digital era. Everything, ranging from studies, communication, games, shopping has gone online. But as everything comes at the expense of other,   internet has its expenses too, which is not just money. The Internet is now considered as one of the basic needs. Like everything, even the crime has gone digital in the absence of proper internet safety rules, the internet is not as safe as we think it to be. And not only the crime, the Internet is also affecting the youngsters in a negative way.

Adverse effects of internet on teenagers

  • Social networking sites– Social networking sites like Facebook has turned out to be an addiction to the majority of teenagers today, who spend a lot of time on social networking sites daily. Besides taking a toll on children’s study, posting pictures, comments on these networking sites is also creating havoc in their lives. Teenagers post personal pictures without managing the privacy settings, that allow the stalkers to peep in their personal life and hence, misuse it.
  • Spam e-mailers– Sometimes via e-mail, kids come in contact with strangers who mislead them by sending spam emails, like links to porn sites, inappropriate photographs etc.
  • Anything posted remains for long– Once, anything inappropriate has been posted, which otherwise seems right at the time, it stays for long. It might stay until the time the person enters into professional life and hence, then the things that were a fault, made out of innocence can lead to embarrassment.
  • The Internet, as a cheat code– Children tend to copy the content from the internet, anything related to homework, assignment, or even for a school competition, by doing so their creativity and intelligence will suffer in long run.

Parent’s ultimate motive is to save the child from all the bad things. The following things can help the parents.

  • Check your child’s social networking page– Ensure that your child’s Social Networking account has proper privacy settings, further, check if your child has ever shared something really personal on his/her page, which pops up when you enter his/her name on Google.
  • Never share passwords– One of the basic rules of internet safety is keeping the password confidential.
  • Never let your child disclose his/her identity– Let all the personal information be personal, don’t let the child disclose-
    • Full name
    • Any type of photograph
    • Current location
    • Names of family members
    • Phone number
  • Avoid meeting online friends– Don’t let your child meet the friend he/she met online. Talking in messages makes it easy for people to fake what they are not, so this kind of friendship is way too risky for children.
  • Cyberbullying– This is yet another thing you need to keep your child away from. It refers to online harassment by a known or former friend, who tends to insult in public. Cyber-bullying can cause your child to undergo depression and hence, for children’s safety parents should keep a check, if their child is suffering from cyber-bullying.

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