fb

How to Protect you and your child online

how to protect children online from cyberbullying

By Nomali Cele

The internet has done wonders to improve modern life: you can be getting into your car on your way to work and receive a traffic warning through twitter, which makes you change your mind and take the Gautrain (or its complementary services) instead, to avoid the morning rush. These days, your children enjoy a perk you never had when you were growing up: they are part of the information generation. This means they know how to access most information (even that which is above their age level) at their fingertips. Your child is more likely to have conversations with others across the country and even across the globe than you ever were.

Knowing your way around the internet is not always all sunshine and rainbows. There are many bad parts too; from body shaming to stories of teens who get catfished by dangerous people. As a parent you even have to worry about whether the content your child views – or worse, sends – is age-appropriate.

Indeed, often, the bad parts will outweigh the benefits of having that high-speed WiFi in your home. How do you protect you and your child from the dangers the internet presents?

  1. Set ground rules

Children are younger than they’ve ever been when they receive computer-based gadgets for the first time. And it brings parents peace of mind. Aren’t you comforted knowing your child can reach you at any time should they need to? But children are also very quick to learn how these gadgets might be used for a lot more than just being a phone call away from mom or dad. A lot can happen in the dark corners of the world wide web. Once the device has been bought, you must set rules about what your child can and can’t do with the device and the internet to which it connects.

Rule suggestions:

  • Establish the length of time your child is allowed to use his or her device (over and above homework requirements) According to experts, children under the age of two should have no screen time at all. Those under 10 should get an hour of supervised time and those under 18 should get no more than two leisure hours on their devices or the family computer each day. An hour and a half for your teen is a fair start. You can then negotiate from there.
  • What are the boundaries that determine when and where your child can use their device? For instance, is it okay for them to use it at dinner just as long as they stick to their daily two-hour Candy Crush limit?
  • There should be a monthly data cap, which will be helpful to track how much internet your child uses. This will be particularly easy to implement if you don’t have uncapped household WiFi and it will teach your child to be economical with resources.
  • The younger your child is, the more they need to understand what age restrictions are and to respect them – most websites allow people who are 13 and older to sign up. Also, the younger your child is, the more they need to know the importance of keeping personal information such as your full name, school and home address private.

Rules for yourself

  • Lead by example and have your own set of rules to guide your internet life
  • Don’t use your gadgets while you are driving
  • Stay away from websites that show content that gets you riled up
  • Block people who troll you
  • Follow the etiquette you expect of your child; and
  • As the experts say: never read the comments.
  1. Exercise Parental Control

Contact your cell phone provider and find out how you can block or filter content on your child’s mobile device or tablet. This should be coupled with an open and frank talk with your child about appropriate content for their age. It will help ease your peace of mind each time your child laughs or smiles or cringes at their device but avoids asking you to come and see.

Visit Google’s safety centre for more tips on exercising parental control.

  1. Check-in

If your child has a WhatsApp group with friends or cousins or has made a small fan website for their favourite band, check in with them from time to time to see how they are doing. It is one thing to feel alienated on the playground and quite another to feel it from the comfort of your sofa.

Advise your child on how to handle their online interactions, especially if the people are friends or family. Make your child feel empowered to resolve conflicts on their own. Also, let your child know that you support them and that they can come to you with concerns.

Red flags that could be indicators that your child is experiencing negativity in their online world include the following behaviour shifts in your child:

  • They are jittery when new messages come in;
  • They avoid taking calls or using their chat apps when you are around;
  • They become secretive about what they do online, including putting a password or pattern on their mobile device;
  • They suddenly break the rules you have set for internet use; and
  • They clear their browsing history on the family computer.
  1. Report

Cyberbullying continues to be a quiet problem that is hard to pick up on for most parents. While you are performing the above step and checking in with your child, ask them overtly if anything (or anyone) is bothering them online.

If your child is being harassed by someone they know personally, follow a reporting channel that includes alerting the school (if they are schoolmates) and the other party’s parents. If the bully is someone your child knows only online, most platforms have channels to report abuse. Top this off with blocking the harasser from viewing your child’s content or interacting with your child.

What you should avoid as a parent

Posting pictures of your child in the public domain that include personal information such as their full name, the name of the school they attend or even photographs that show your child in their school uniform. These gestures of sharing the cuteness of your child could come back sinisterly to haunt you and your child in the future. The same applies to home videos of your child which you might think adorable, but you never know who is looking at them.

Are you keeping up with what your child accesses online and on their phone?

    Don’t miss out on the latest local news, interviews and competitions.

    Don’t miss out on the latest local news, interviews and competitions.

    More Articles
    Receive the latest news

    Subscribe To Our Newsletter

    THE KAYA 959 APP NOW AVAILABLE

    DOWNLOAD YOURS NOW

    Copyright Notice

    1. COPYRIGHT

    1.1 The contents of this Website, including but not limited to its compilation and arrangement, is the exclusive property of Kaya 959, alternatively the suppliers of content to Kaya 959, and accordingly remain protected by South African and International Copyright and Trademark laws.

    1.2 Any person accessing this Website, may not, save for downloading one copy for their personal computers and solely for their private and non-commercial use :

    1.2.1 Copy, disseminate, distribute, advertise, publish, adapt, modify or in any way reproduce the contents of this website for commercial purposes, unless this notice and any disclaimer attached thereto is published in its entirety, or unless the permission of Kaya 959 is obtained in writing.

    Privacy Policy

    THIS PRIVACY STATEMENT FORMS PART OF KAYA 959’S TERMS OF USE POLICY. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE WITH ANY TERM OF THIS PRIVACY STATEMENT, YOU MUST CEASE YOUR ACCESS OF THIS WEBSITE IMMEDIATELY. 

    POPIA ActTo promote the protection of personal information processed by public and private bodies; to introduce certain conditions so as to establish minimum requirements for the processing of personal information; to provide for the establishment of an Information Regulator to exercise certain powers and to perform certain duties and functions in terms of this Act and the Promotion of Access to Information Act, 2000; to provide for the issuing of codes of conduct; to provide for the rights of persons regarding unsolicited electronic communications and automated decision making; to regulate the flow of personal information across the borders of the Republic; and to provide for matters connected therewith.

    RECOGNISING THAT—

    • section 14 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, provides that everyone has the right to privacy;
    • the right to privacy includes a right to protection against the unlawful collection, retention, dissemination and use of personal information;
    • the State must respect, protect, promote and fulfil the rights in the Bill of Rights;

    AND BEARING IN MIND THAT—

    • consonant with the constitutional values of democracy and openness, the need for economic and social progress, within the framework of the information society, requires the removal of unnecessary impediments to the free flow of information, including personal information;

    AND IN ORDER TO—

    • regulate, in harmony with international standards, the processing of personal information by public and private bodies in a manner that gives effect to the right to privacy subject to justifiable limitations that are aimed at protecting other rights and important interests,
    1. Definitions and Interpretation

    1.1.“Personal Information” means information relating to an identifiable, living, natural person and where it is applicable, identifiable, existing juristic person, including all information as defined in the Protection of Personal Information Act 4 of 2013. 

    1.2  Parliament assented to POPIA on 19 November 2013. The commencement date of section 1Part A of Chapter 5section 112 and section 113 was 11 April 2014. The commencement date of the other sections was 1 July 2020 (with the exception of section 110 and 114(4). The President of South Africa has proclaimed the POPI commencement date to be 1 July 2020.

     
    1.3. “Processing” means the creation, generation, communication, storage, destruction of personal information as more fully defined in the Protection of Personal Information Act 4 of 2013.  

    1.4. “You” or the “user” means any person who accesses and browses this website for any purpose. 

    1.4. “Website” means the website of the KAYA 959 at URL www.kaya959.co.za or such other URL as KAYA 959 may choose from time to time.   

    1. Status and Amendments

    2.1. KAYA 959 respects your privacy. This privacy policy statement sets out KAYA 959’s information gathering and dissemination practices in respect of the Website. 

    2.2. This Privacy Policy governs the processing of personal information provided to KAYA 959 through your use of the Website. 

    2.3. Please note that, due to legal and other developments, KAYA 959 may amend these terms and conditions from time to time.  

    1. Processing of Personal Information

    3.1. By providing your personal information to KAYA 959 you acknowledge that it has been collected directly from you and consent to its processing by KAYA 959. 

    3.2. Where you submit Personal Information (such as name, address, telephone number and email address) via the website (e.g. through completing any online form) the following principles are observed in the processing of that information: 

    3.2.1. KAYA 959 will only collect personal information for a purpose consistent with the purpose for which it is required. The specific purpose for which information is 
    collected will be apparent from the context in which it is requested. 

    3.2.2. KAYA 959 will only process personal information in a manner that is adequate, relevant and not excessive in the context of the purpose for which it is processed. 

    3.2.3. Personal information will only be processed for a purpose compatible with that for which it was collected, unless you have agreed to an alternative purpose in writing or KAYA 959 is permitted in terms of national legislation of general application dealing primarily with the protection of personal information. 

    3.2.4. KAYA 959 will keep records of all personal Information collected and the specific purpose for which it was collected for a period of 1 (one) year from the date on which it was last used. 

    3.2.5. KAYA 959 will not disclose any personal information relating to you to any third party unless your prior written agreement is obtained or KAYA 959 is required to do so by law. 

    3.2.6. If personal information is released with your consent KAYA 959 will retain a record of the information released, the third party to which it was released, the reason for the release and the date of release, for a period of 1 (one) year from the date on which it was last used. 

    3.2.7. KAYA 959 will destroy or delete any personal information that is no longer needed by KAYA 959 for the purpose it was initially collected, or subsequently processed. 

    3.3. Note that, as permitted by the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act 25 of 2002, KAYA 959 may use personal information collected to compile profiles for statistical purposes. No information contained in the profiles or statistics will be able to be linked to any specific user.    

    1. Collection of anonymous data

    4.1. KAYA 959 may use standard technology to collect information about the use of this website. This technology is not able to identify individual users but simply allows KAYA 959 to collect statistics. 

    4.2. KAYA 959 may utilise temporary or session cookies to keep track of users’ browsing habits. A cookie is a small file that is placed on your hard drive in order to keep a record of your interaction with this website and facilitate user convenience. 

    4.2.1. Cookies by themselves will not be used to identify users personally but may be used to compile identified statistics relating to use of services offered or to provide KAYA 959 with feedback on the performance of this website. 

    4.2.2. The following classes of information may be collected in respect of users who have enabled cookies: 

    4.2.2.1. The browser software used; 

    4.2.2.2. IP address; 

    4.2.2.3. Date and time of activities while visiting the website; 

    4.2.2.4. URLs of internal pages visited; and 

    4.2.2.5. referrers. 

    4.3. If you do not wish cookies to be employed to customize your interaction with this website it is possible to alter the manner in which your browser handles cookies. Please note that, if this is done, certain services on this website may not be available. 

    1. Security

    5.1. KAYA 959 takes reasonable measures to ensure the security and integrity of information submitted to or collected by this website, but cannot under any circumstances be held liable for any loss or other damage sustained by you as a result of unlawful access to or dissemination of any personal information by a third party. 

    1. Links to other websites

    6.1. KAYA 959 has no control over and accepts no responsibility for the privacy practices of any third party websites to which hyperlinks may have been provided and KAYA 959 strongly recommends that you review the privacy policy of any website you visit before using it further. 

    1. Queries

    7.1. If you have any queries about this privacy policy please contact us by emailing [email protected] 

    Competition Terms and Conditions

    • The competitions are open to all persons over the age of 18 years; except directors, partners, employees, agents, service providers, and consultants of Kaya 959, the sponsor and all its subsidiaries and its holding company, if any, as well as all spouses, life partners, parents, children, siblings, business partners and associates of such persons.

    • The outcome of the competition is subject to the decision of the judge/presenter, whose decision is final and no negotiation will be entered into thereafter. Neither Kaya 959, sponsors nor their agents will be held responsible or answerable to any dispute arising from the competition or prize awards.

    • Participants/listeners enter or take part in competitions at their own risk and Kaya 959 bears no responsibility for any loss, damage or harm suffered as a result of participation in any of Kaya 959 competition.

    • One listener is entitled to winning one prize in a period of 3 months. Kaya 959 reserves the right not to award a prize if the listener has won a prize prior during the 3 month window period. This also applies to listeners who provide family or friend’s contact details.

    • Kaya 959 reserves the right to redistribute all unclaimed prizes if not claimed after 3 months after being given away On Air or on the website.

    • Prizes are not transferable and may not be exchanged for cash.

    • Finalists will forfeit their participation in the competition if they fail to attend the draws.

    • The competition will run during the period advertised on Kaya 959; entries received outside of the competition period will not be considered for the competition draw.

    • Kaya 959 and their sponsors reserve the right to cancel, modify or amend the competition at any time if deemed necessary in their opinion, or if circumstances arise outside of their control.

    • By entering the competition, entrants agree to accept these rules and to be bound by them.