For those of us who grew up with the internet, or have at least had several years of experience with it in our personal and professional lives, we can sometimes take internet safety for granted: don’t talk to strangers, don’t post your address or your personal information, double-check a website before you place an order. We do these things automatically, but if we want to make the internet a safer place for everyone, we have to pass these tips on to our children, parents, friends, and family.
On that note, today is Safer Internet Day! The theme for this year’s event is “Together for a better Internet” and being an internet provider we know this is so important, especially for kids and older adults.
We want to share some of our favorite safety tips, for kids and adults online.
- Use Parental Controls – We’ve talked about this a few times, but it’s so important to make sure you know what your kids have access to online. You can usually set up content filters on your devices with apps or with your internet browser, or if you have the Wisper Home app, you can set content filters and restrictions there as well, and keep an eye on what they’re trying to see.
- Set Family Rules – Setting family rules for internet use is another good one for kids and teens. Explain to them why those rules are there and help them if they have questions so they understand. And make sure they know to tell you if they see anything they aren’t sure about.
- Limit Personal Information Online – This one is hard these days with social media, but we really do need to be careful what information we’re posting about ourselves. In general, be careful not to put your phone number, address, or your personal email on your profiles. It can even be helpful to keep your school or employer’s information off of social media.
- Stay on Secure sites – One tip that you might not know is how to find out if a site is ‘secure’ before you buy something or enter your information. If you look up in your browser window, right in front of the web address there should be a little lock. If there’s not a lock there or there’s a warning icon instead, it’s best to leave that site right away.
- Keep Your Antivirus Updated – Antivirus is another big one that we’ve touched on before, but it’s worth saying again. A good antivirus will keep your devices and your information protected even if you do end up on a not-so-safe site. We do also have antivirus included in the Wisper Home App!
- Guest Networks and VPN – A virtual private network helps protect your information online by hiding things like your name and location. If you have our Wisper Home App, we’ve talked about the guest network feature, where you can set up a separate network for your guests to use that keeps threats away from your personal network and your devices.
Some of these may sound pretty simple to someone who spends a lot of time online, but for kids who are just learning, or even for parents and grandparents who haven’t grown up with internet access, it’s important to share these tips to help keep your loved ones safe online.
At Wisper, we’re working to make the internet a safer place for everyone by providing our customers with the tools to protect themselves online, but we also want to help educate everyone in our communities on how to navigate the internet carefully and use it to the highest potential. We have a number of resources available on our website and on our social media accounts, and we’re happy to answer any questions you may have about our Wisper Home app, our wireless service, and the internet in general.
If you’d like more resources on Safer Internet Day, you can go to their (secure!) website, SaferInternetDay.org.
So keep these tips in mind this week, and let us know some of your favorite safer internet tips!