TOERAELA Ncos­nwceer­rns L s


Parenting - - Hot Tips -

In March, we con­ducted a sur­vey to find out how fam­i­lies are us­ing tech­nol­ogy and what par­ents’ main con­cerns are. Of the 1406 par­ents who com­pleted the sur­vey,

75% are con­cerned that their chil­dren will be sent of­fen­sive ma­te­rial.

73% are con­cerned that their chil­dren will re­ceive in­ap­pro­pri­ate con­tact by an adult while on­line.

70% are con­cerned that their chil­dren will ac­cess pornog­ra­phy or other of­fen­sive ma­te­rial them­selves.

63% are con­cerned that their chil­dren will be bul­lied on­line or via text mes­sages.

It's no se­cret that par­ents are feel­ing daunted by the ev­ere­volv­ing dig­i­tal world we are liv­ing in. We want you to know that you're not alone and that there are some great, prac­ti­cal things you can do to pro­tect your kids and help them use tech­nol­ogy to their ad­van­tage! In up­com­ing is­sues of Par­ent­ing mag­a­zine, we will try and tackle some of your con­cerns, be­gin­ning with some fan­tas­tic sug­ges­tions from digi-par­ent­


The 'S' stands for Se­cure. When deal­ing with your bank, an auc­tion site, Face­book or any other off­i­cal web­site, make sure the ad­dress of the site starts with 'https://' – this way your us­age is en­crypted, and you can be sure it’s not a fake site set up to look like one of the real ones.


You could try to 'black­list' ma­li­cious sites, dodgy email ad­dresses and ap­pli­ca­tions you don’t want the kids to down­load – but it might be quicker and more re­li­able to 'whitelist' only the sites, ap­pli­ca­tions and email ad­dresses you do trust. Try search­ing for 'whitelist' plus 'email', 'ap­pli­ca­tion' or 'web­site' as re­quired, and set your own one up.

Virus pro­tec­tion

Make sure your anti-virus soft­ware is up to date (and switched on), and your de­vice is backed up. They’ll do all the work for you, so you can en­joy the in­ter­net with con­fi­dence.

Make a plan to back it up. If any­thing does go wrong, you’ll at least have a copy of your pre­cious data. Shop around for an af­ford­able backup drive and use au­to­mated backup soft­ware, with re­minders to make it hap­pen.

Part two – se­cure the peo­ple

Okay, so you’ve se­cured your de­vices in step one. All ready to sign up for your new role as head of cy­ber se­cu­rity con­sult­ing? No need – sim­ply get the team in­volved in mak­ing ev­ery­one’s in­ter­net ex­pe­ri­ence more se­cure, with a five-minute run-through of the five-step setup.

Just like any other par­ent­ing sit­u­a­tion, a few sim­ple rules go a long way. But which rules?

Make sure your fam­ily knows

Never give out de­tails with­out ask­ing an adult first (in­clud­ing your­self!) – and make sure the whole fam­ily un­der­stands why.

Shop on­line with a friend – use rep­utable shop­ping sites, and/or have some­one else check the sale be­fore you hit 'Buy Now'. If it’s too good to be true, it prob­a­bly is – but we of­ten need fresh eyes to help us see that.

Use debit cards in­stead of credit cards when shop­ping on­line – this lim­its your ex­po­sure. Call your bank and ask for help set­ting these up.

Call callers back – teach ev­ery­one to ask for a phone num­ber and a name from any­one who calls you di­rect ask­ing for in­for­ma­tion. And re­mem­ber, your bank will never call you to ask for your pass­word.

Have an 'ask amnesty' in place – so the kids know they can al­ways ask for help if they find them­selves in an un­com­fort­able spot.

For more great ad­vice and tech­nol­ogy tips, go to digi-par­ent­ or come along to a Digi-par­ent­ing work­shop with Dave Atkin­son – Wed­nes­day, 18 May, 7.30pm in Auck­land and Mon­day, 23 May, 7.30pm in Ro­torua. Go to for more de­tails and to book.

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