It wasn’t very long ago that keeping your children protected on their digital devices was an easy ordeal. The entire family had one PC that often resided in what we called the PC room. The television sets came with built in parental controls. The home telephone was connected so that you could always listen in to your children’s conversations. But we’ve moved on from that now and things have started to get complicated. We’re now considering cell phone surveillance on an entirely new level.
Check out this infographic from UKnowKids:
From Communal to Single
We’re now in the times of the handheld technology. Where once there used to be 1 PC per family, you now have 1 smartphone, 1 tablet and 1 laptop per person. Sometimes more, if you consider the fact that some people have work laptops, some kids have computers just for gaming and that sometimes families have a “communal” tablet in addition to the personal devices. Kids now have the entire world’s knowledge in the palm of their hands. They have access to so much information that the mind boggles. In the past it was easier for parents to control the sorts of information that a child attained on the internet. But now there are just so many more avenues. Not to mention that the need for constant connectivity has taken over where social media has become the primary method in which people connect.
In this scenario, it has become more pertinent than ever before that parents be full aware of the modern methods of monitoring that are at their disposal. We’ve moved past the time where the inbuilt parental control settings on your television set was the only way you could conduct monitoring. These days, you are restricted only by your imagination. There exist so many parental control methods that your new dilemma is not how to monitor but what app to choose for monitoring.
Before we go on and tell you about our choice of app, let’s talk about what parental controls are for and for what they are not.
What Parental Controls are For
They are a means for you to protect your children in situations where hyper-connectivity can be a threat. There are many cyber dangers out there that you need to be aware of as a parent. For instance, cyberbullying is a problem that has plagued children for as long as the internet has existed. Where there is freedom of speech combined with the safety of anonymity, you can bet your bottom dollar that children will let their guard down and say whatever comes to mind. This will be regardless of who gets hurt… no thought is put into how their words will be received. Go to the comments section of any YouTube video or find yourself in Facebook forums and you’ll find cases of cyberbullying.
In the same way, internet anonymity has made it easier for predators to look for their victims. Malicious strangers look for vulnerable people online to exploit in any way they can. If you remember, a while ago there was a show on the air called “To Catch a Predator.” This show highlighted how pedophiles use chat rooms to talk to, groom, and meet up with and solicit minors. The worst part is that these cases were not even rare or few. They happen every time a minor goes online and chats anonymously with strangers.
Therefore, parental controls can be used to monitor a child’s communication with online strangers and to elicit the nature of those communications.
What Parental Controls are NOT For
Parental controls are not a means for you to restrict your child’s internet access altogether. It may seem like wise idea at first to have your kids grow up in a household without internet. In reality, you will be denying them of all the information that is good for them. You will be denying them of the growth and knowledge of the modern world. You need to understand that most education these days is designed around the use of technology. It helps a child learn way more than just through books. Moreover, most jobs now require one to have top notch tech and internet knowledge. Businesses, forums, education centers, hospitals, restaurants… everything is now online. Stopping them from being part of this world would be stopping their world of opportunities. Not only will you be putting their mental development on hold, you’ll be taking away their chances of learning new things.
Finding Middle Ground
There is a need for teenage privacy facing off with a just as ferocious need for parental cell phone surveillance. When you find yourself in these crossroads as a parent, turns to apps that will help you monitor in a wireless way. XNSPY, for example is an app that remotely connects your child’s smartphone to your own laptop or smartphone so that you can read anything that goes on. In this way, you persist with your responsibility as a parent to look after your child’s digital well being. At the same time, your child does not feel like you are constantly breathing down their necks. They can experience their digital world normally. They can learn new things; they can connect with all sorts of people. And they can do all of this in the safest way possible because you’ll be there to guide them when things go wrong.