specific things you can do to help keep your own teens safe. Start by
getting involved! Educate yourself on how the Internet works and keep
tabs on your child’s computer use.
Create a written Internet safety plan. Set rules for the Internet and
email use. Include specific strategies for what your teen will do if
they are sexually solicited online, or if they are frightened by an
• Remind your teen not to disclose personal information online.
• Draft a list together of what not to share, including name, age, school, phone numbers, home address, and photos.
• Talk frequently with your teen. Discuss their online friends just as you would about their other friends.
• Keep the computer in a common area of the house. This makes it easier to monitor computer use.
Ask your teen to tell you right away about uncomfortable online
experiences, with assurances that you will not be angry if she or she
confides in you.
• Consider filtering or monitoring software. While
they can help you control your teen’s online use, these devices are no
substitute for parental involvement and supervision.
• Be aware your teen might be using computers at school, public libraries, and friends’ homes.
Know the signs of “grooming.” When someone initiates online contact
with a young person with the intention of establishing a sexual
relationship, its called “grooming.”
• If you suspect online “grooming” of your teen or of any other child, report it to your local law enforcement agency.
TIPS FOR TEENS
Internet can be a great research tool and a fun way to keep in touch
with friends and family. But going online also presents some possible
dangers that you need to know about. Here are some ways you can steer
clear of trouble while using the web.
• Nothing is private
• Be smart
• Knowing when to tell an adult about an uncomfortable internet interaction.