Email Safety for Kids

Written by charice mccray
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Email Safety for Kids
children and computers (Image by, courtesy of André Mouraux)

Kids can use e-mailing to communicate with their friends, make new ones through writing pen pals, and reach out to teachers for completing assignments. Using e-mail for communication can also be harmful if children are not careful and/or supervised.

Educate Your Kids

Tell your children about the dangerous situations associated with e-mailing. Explain to them that e-mails are not private but instant messages sent electronically through the world wide web.

Know Who Your Child's Friends Are

Be aware of who your child is communicating with both online and offline. Familiarise yourself with their friends. Show them how to store their friend's e-mails addresses in a contact/address folder.

Use an Email Filter

E-mail programs often offer e-mail filters to allow the option of blocking e-mails from certain individuals and words for those spam e-mails.

Inappropriate Email Messages

Advise your kids that if they receive an offensive or illegal e-mail to notify you immediately. According to Enough Is Enough, a study published by the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2008 indicated "48 per cent of K-1st reported viewing online content that made them feel uncomfortable, of which 72 per cent reported the experience to a grown-up, meaning that one in four children did not".

Explain the Dangers of Spam Email

Talk to your kids about spam e-mail and update them about the tricks spammers use to obtain information. Advise them not to reply to spam e-mail especially if they do not know who the sender is.

Teach Them to Protect Their Email Address

Inform your kids to keep their e-mail address private and only to share it with their friends and people they truly know and trust.

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