Join Mims Blog to Research ”
8 Cell Phone Safety Tips For All Parents ”
The age kids today are getting cell phones decreases every year. Parents need to ensure their children are using these devices appropriately and safely. It is also necessary to set a good example for your children. As some parents may hesitate to give their child a cell phone, it can be their best friend when you need to get in contact with them. Does your child already have a phone? Familiarize yourself with safety tips to make sure your child is using their device safely.
- Don’t Give Your Child A Phone To Early
If your child is with a trusted adult most of the time, they will not need a cell phone. When your child is at an age when they are hanging out with friends and participating in clubs and sports teams, that is when they will need a cell phone. Make sure you trust your child and set rules for when and how to use the device correctly. Some parents opt for cell phones designed for kids specifically.
- Set Ground Rules
With any child who has a cell phone, ground rules must be in place that both the child and parents agree upon. By both of you agreeing to them, your child will develop a sense of independence and trust in you. Ground rule examples include when the phone should and shouldn’t be used, what it can be used for, who they can communicate with, and more.
- Thoroughly Review All Of Your Child’s Apps & Accounts
With all of the apps and accounts on their phone, thoroughly review them. A few questions you will want to ask yourself include:
- What can they do on this app?
- What security and privacy setting are included?
- Are there any parental control options?
- Is any of their personal information viewable to others?
- Are there any dangers my child may be exposed to?
To monitor your child’s overall app use, especially for screen time, we recommend utilizing Family Link.
- Enable Parental Controls
Cell phone devices and carriers often have their own parental controls to help parents stay in control of their child’s phone use. For example, AT&T parental controls and T-Mobile parental controls help parents restrict specific features and protect children from common mobile device threats. These and more parental controls can also aid in reducing a child’s screen time.
- Keep Information Private
It is important to never share too much information online and on apps. With apps using features of cell phones like microphone, camera, location, and many others, parents need to make sure apps and their child’s device are not sharing personal information about them with anyone. You can see what information is being shared from your child’s device in the settings of the phone. Parents need to be aware of what the device is sharing about your child and keep them and their information protected from common threats on cell phones.
- Educate Them About Smartphone Threats
Even though there are many reasons why you are giving your child a cell phone, it is essential to make them aware of online threats. With hackers becoming more discreet, it is harder to tell what is spam and what is real. Then there’s the matter of predators disguising their true identity when contacting children. This is why you need to educate your child on how to recognize these attacks and threats and what to do if they come across them on their phone.
- Stay Up-To-Date On Safety Resources
Parents cannot only turn to other parents and social media to learn of the new trends and safety tips to watch out for. Staying updated on new articles and dialogs on sites like Smart Social and other newsletters can teach you much of what is going on today online and with devices. These are also great places to connect with other parents and read their stories.
- Limit Phone Overuse
With children turning to cell phones to connect with friends and utilize apps, you may be wondering, what do I do if my child is spending too much time on their phone? There are new screen time limiting features that come pre-installed on cell phones. You can also steer your kid away from their phone by playing sports or finding a hobby to get them outside. Try to find activities you both can do together. Also, assigning weekly chores is an excellent way to get your children off their devices.
Cell phones are extremely helpful but can be misused and take control over your child’s life. It is essential that as a parent you are looking out for the safety of your children and keep them protected while using their cell phones. This may be a learning experience but make an effort to become knowledgeable about phone threats and what you can do to make sure your children are using them responsibly.
8 Cell Phone Safety Tips For All Parents