Hello!

Today’s teens use technology more than ever. Our young girls have access to blogs, online videos, social networking, celebrity gossip and world news.

While most of the activities that your daughter participates in, such as emailing and chatting with friends, are safe, there are some dangers to using the Internet.

Unfortunately the same advances in computer and telecommunication technology that allow our children to reach out to new sources of knowledge and cultural experiences are also leaving them vulnerable to exploitation and harm by computer-sex offenders. Some teens may post inappropriate photos online or be the victims to cyber bullying.

When your daughter uses the Internet, be aware of the possible dangers and follow some simple steps to protect your daughter when she is online:

  • Talk to your daughter about Internet safety. Remind her that she must never give out her full name, address or the name of her school to anyone online. Do not let her choose usernames that are suggestive or that would allow someone to identify her. Make sure that she knows never to attempt to meet anyone that she has communicated with online without your permission.
  • Educate your daughter to only befriend people on social media that she knows personally.
  • Young girls are bombarded daily by media images that send out a message to our girls that their value or their worth is related to how they look physically. We now see a major problem with our young girls who feel that they need to exchange sex for love. This leads many young girls to post inappropriate photos of themselves on websites or FaceBook. What girls need to be educated about is that once these images go out into the cyber world, they no longer own them, they have no control who sees them and these images are like a tattoo, there forever.
  • Supervise your child when she’s online. Know which sites she visits, and monitor what types of online activities she participates in. Keep the computer in a central location in your home to make it easier to keep an eye on her. You are the parent and need to set boundaries with what your daughter can and can not have access to online.
  • Use your Internet provider’s parental controls to ban certain websites if desired. Another option is to install filtering software.
  • Check your computer’s history periodically to make sure that your child is following the rules that you have set for Internet use.
  • When it comes to online bullying which has become epidemic in todays society, encourage your daughter to communicate with you about what is going on in her world. She will be far more inclined to tell you about any online bullying if she feels she can confide in you. Bullying online has become so easy for teens to do as online communication gives people a sense of bravery and lack of accountability. Make sure your daughter knows that cyber bullying is harmful and unacceptable. Teach teens not to respond to cyber bullies. Show them how to block the bully’s messages or to delete messages without reading them.
 Marina Passalaris is the founder and director of Beautiful Minds Australia, a school dedicated to educating girls about self-esteem, etiquette and life skills to help them become confident and dynamic individuals. She is also the author of the new book, Beautiful Minds, available from www.beautifulminds.com.au
  • Always supervise your kids when they are online

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  • No iPads and no internet on mobile phones, or the ability to take and send photos, when my daughter first got a mobile. Phew!

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  • This is full of great information for me at this point in time. I have a tween daughter so it’s very relevant

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  • So important! Its very good knowledge to know! Thanks for sharing this article!

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  • You have to be so honest about the potential dangers. It’s scary to think what and who is out there.

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  • also be wary of sites like twitter and facebook. i have a twitter and people i follow might tweet thing or pictures that are inappropriate. they really are better off staying away from these sites completely

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  • Thanks for sharing this information; very helpful.

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  • Stranger danger has become so omnipotent these days. It really is terrifying. Thanks for the article.

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  • this is very useful.I hope my daughter can live safety with any dangerous.
    from:customcanvasonline

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  • Great article but we need to watch our boys also.

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  • My girls are always advising me about internet safety.

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  • online stalking and bullying is making it so much harder to let the kids go online

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  • Very helpful guide, thank you!

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  • it isn’t only your daughters, our sons are just as vulnerable

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  • Very good advice! It is so worrying these days with all the danger out there

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