HOW TO PROTECT YOUR CHILD
Parents should educate their children about what’s acceptable on social media, says Corné Peach, a Johannesburg clinical psychologist.
The perils of strangers and sharing nude photos should be pointed out to them as part of sex education. “The right time to talk about it is when your child first starts making use of a cellphone, or a computer, and the internet,” she says.
Children need to learn from a young age that people don’t always have their best interests at heart, Peach adds. They should also know that people aren’t always who they pretend to be online. “Honest, direct and open discussions are best.”
Professor Esmé van Rensburg, a lecturer in child psychology at North-West University, advises parents to monitor their children’s social media accounts and regularly check their browser history.
“There’s nothing wrong with doing a random spot-check – even if they hate you for it.”