Message Boards

Topic : Safeguarding Your Kids from Internet Predators

Number of Replies: 75
New Messages This Week: 0
Last Reply On:
Created on : Sunday, September 17, 2006, 12:05:20 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
With more and more children accessing the internet, safety is a key issue. What should you be aware of and how do you keep your own kids safe online? Share your tips and advice here.

As of January, 2009, this message board will become "Read Only" and will be closed to further posting. Please join the NEW Dr. Phil Community to continue your discussions, personalize your message board experience, start a blog and meet new friends.

July 20, 2007, 12:24 pm CDT

Safeguarding Your Kids from Internet Predators

I have been on the internet since I was 11, and my parents have nevermonitored me. I'm 19 right now and have learned from experience what Ishould avoid and what is alright.

My parents just warned me. "Stay away from weird people, don't give outour address or phone number and be careful". That's it. Instead ofbelitteling me like a little child they let me discover the world onthe internet on my own. They let me made mistakes I could come to themwith so I'd learn; how can you learn if all you know is safety andprotection? When your children grow up they need to be able to puttheir foot down and fend for themselves. If all you do is monitor themand play police officer they will just do all the things you forbidthem behind your backs or they will never get any backbone they need.

Porn? Porn is a very normal something for a teenage boy. It's not theporn that corrupts, it's the upbringing that does. Porn is justmaterial that allows a boy to release stress and physical pent-upness.It's the upbringing that determines what else he does. If he can nevertalk to his parents about what sex and porn is, then he will just endup sexually frustrated and do stupid things that get him in trouble. Myparents have taught me at an early age what sex is. How to be safe. Iam 19 and still a virgin and proud of it because I was taught that sexis a special thing that you need to share with the right person. Howcan your son or daughter know this if their parents never mention sexat all? When porn is frowned upon as a bad thing? When sex is completely taboo?

I like to consider myself an honest and a decent person, and the only reason I am is because my parents raised me with the morals and values I currently hold dear. I have watched violent cartoons, been exposed to porn on the internet, been exposed to the bad kind of people on the internet... And I was never harmed in my life because of it, nor have I ever harmed anyone else. I was safe and protected because I trusted my parents to let me do my thing and be there for me when I needed them. I was safe and protected because they raised me with a particular mindset and had [b]faith[/b] in me. Do you know how important it is for a child to have their parents' faith?

The only reason children get corrupted these days is because parents do not listen to their children, don't understand them and make no effort to, don't educate them right and do not pass down their moral and values. I may just be 19, but I have dealt with children enough as an elementary TA and Scouts Staff member to know that children listen to you when you give them a reason to respect you, because they trust you, because you give them the freedom they need to develop themselves.

Keeping an eye on your children or acting like a police officer are two different things. Don't make the mistake of becoming the latter because that is why children do things they shouldn't. I have talked to countless girls and boys of 12-15 who sneak on to chat with their friends because their parents are too strict. They can barely breathe.

Raising children is about balancing things out. Make compromises where needed, give them some room, educate them right and trust them that they will come to you when needed. Don't be a police officer to them but a person they can trust to understand and support them, not someone who refuses to even only let them try. Kids learn to ride their bikes by falling and getting back up and trying again. That is what we adults do in life as well. Giving your children a big, thick suit stuffed with feathers so they won't hurt themselves will only make them more vulnerable in the future.

Just my two cents. :)
 
July 20, 2007, 12:26 pm CDT

Safeguarding Your Kids from Internet Predators

Quote From: speeshpow49

Please parents understand no matter who your child is they are at risk of these predators. I am 16 I know this so please listen. Under no circumstances is it wrong for you to walk by as often as you want to check on your kids when they are on the internet. Nothing they do on that internet should be PRIVATE! They can flirt they can have fun but for no reason should they be allowed to have a web cam! That is crazy! If they want to talk to friends they know what they look like already, that cam is only for bad. I personally know this. I go on these chat sites, I used to have many pen pals in the past. Now when I go one the first thing they ask is age, location, and gender. It's not hello anymore parents. Then they start asking if you could send them pictures and things like that. Watch your teens. The nicest children get caught into these things I know this. The sweetest kids are still in danger. You might think that your kid knows better but as a teen I know sometimes kids do things to spite you and it is hard to understand but try parents. A child should be on the internet for chatting with friends, homework, and games. Please as a teen I know, please watch your teens. I have seen my friends go out and find people they see on the internet and date them. My frind was 15 he was 45. She was an -A student she was nice and smart. I asked her why she did it and she said because her parents always said it was bad, but they ticked her off so they don't understand her so they can't possibly know him! WHAT!!! Please parents know what is best for your teens you don't have to be their friend please keep a close eye on them, it is hard sometimes for us to grasp the fact that parents know what's best. So please every parent out their, if you love your kids, keep a close eye on them. 
"I go on these chat sites, I used to have many pen pals in the past. Now when I go one the first thing they ask is age, location, and gender. It's not hello anymore parents. Then they start asking if you could send them pictures and things like that. Watch your teens. The nicest children get caught into these things I know this."

Then parents must teach "These people are bad, stay away from them". :) That's what mine did and I turned out just fine, never had a problem in my life.
 
August 7, 2007, 8:19 am CDT

Safeguarding Your Kids from Internet Predators

Quote From: ceildh1

Don't know if I can be much help, but I can try.

First off, would it really be a good idea to allow him to dictate whether or not you, your husband( if  applicable) or his siblings ( again if applicable), should be allowed to access the internet because he has a problem ? Probably NOT.  To me that is like my Alcoholic relations telling me I cannot have a drink if I want to, I don't have the problem, they do, hope you can see what I'm getting at here.

How about locking the doors with computers in them, or cutting down the number of computers in your home, if you need one for work, keep it locked up, yeah I know how crafty and computer literate kids are (sigh) I have a couple of teens myself, then maybe keep a second one for the kids in a PUBLIC AREA of your home, restricing access to only IF a parent is home and watching.  I had resorted to taking the MOUSE and KEYBOARD to work with me when we had the same problem.

Unfortunatly, there is nothing you can do outside your home, but if its happening at a friend's home, are the friend's PARENTS aware of what their kids are doing online ? Maybe a friendly phone call ( not always successful I know, but worth a try ) to the other parents might help, call the school and let them know or the library if these are other places he might be accessing the internet, the web is EVERYWHERE these days and there are countless places where it can be accessed, be vigilant of where he goes, and check up on him, until they sign the lease on their first apartment, they have no right to REAL privacy, your home, your rules.

But, all that being said, this young man NEEDS HELP, professional HELP, find someone in your area, and don't give up, he seems to be BEGGING for it and as much as we hate to admit it, they aren't always comfortable talking to us, PLEASE don't let this escalate into something worse, get his father on board, if possible, but PLEASE find a professional and get him the help he needs, you sound like you two have a good relationship, that's a good start.

Good luck to you.

I think it is great that he wants the computer out of the house all together.  If it is possible in any way I think you should get rid of it.  We all did get along without computers at one time.  If you must have a computer because you work out of your home set it up to where no one can access it but you.  The best way to avoid temptation in my opinion is to completely seperate yourself from what is tempting you.  Since he asked you to get rid of the computer it seems that he is looking to seperate himself from his temptation.  If you are involved in church get him into talk to someone there.  I truly believe that we can't do anything on our own will.  We all need to rely on God to help us through the tough times.  Assure him that he is not the only one who has struggled whith these problems and get him some help sooner rather than later.  This is a serious issue.  Best of lucK!
 
November 1, 2007, 1:12 pm CDT

facebook/myspace

I would like to know if it is my right to know our 15 year olds passwords to these accts?
 
November 1, 2007, 3:54 pm CDT

Safeguarding Your Kids from Internet Predators

Quote From: mstrong66

I would like to know if it is my right to know our 15 year olds passwords to these accts?

first why would you want to? you can view his accounts without the passwords too. If you see something you don't like then you can let him take it off. There is no advantage in knowing the passwords in my opinion.

 

Then from a legal standpoint I don´t know. If I look at dutch (medical) law he has the right for instance to deny you access to his medical file from age 16 onward, but there is a high probebility doctors wouldn't show it to you if he didn't want you to at age 15 either.

 
November 8, 2007, 8:46 pm CST

view passwords

Quote From: oet_gaol

first why would you want to? you can view his accounts without the passwords too. If you see something you don't like then you can let him take it off. There is no advantage in knowing the passwords in my opinion.

 

Then from a legal standpoint I don´t know. If I look at dutch (medical) law he has the right for instance to deny you access to his medical file from age 16 onward, but there is a high probebility doctors wouldn't show it to you if he didn't want you to at age 15 either.

 

Hello,

 

I would like to add a little information to your question. I have 2 daughters and I am married. We tell our children that everything they own we let them. for example my oldest daughter says things like this is her room. We say as long as it is in our house ,and u r not  paying the bills, then we lend it to u. I also, check up on them if the r going someplace, I stop by at any given time and they know this. Trust has to be earned in our home.I know this my sound harsh however, we feel that to many parents let their children have to much freedom and feel it is wrong to know what ur child is doing. we believe that it is a parents responsibility to know who our children are with, where they  r going, who they  r going to be with and when will they like to be home. If more parents did this , less children would be running the streets and using drugs.

 

 

My husband is an I. T. admin. I must tell u most employers have a person reading every email that is sent out in comes in at the work place. There is software in which u can buy that will "hack" all passwords on that network. I felt that this was a violation of privacy. My husband says its not only because u r not suppose to send personal emails at the work place and they have the right to read them if u do. Plus if someone is send child porn or  planning to give discounts to family members  or anything that is questionable the employer could be held responsible. The FBI has the right to pull any activity on any IP address they want for however many years they need. I think that all Internet providers need to have the ability to do this by May 2008, I could be wrong about the date. So in reality we as adults have no privacy because they randomly pull IP addresses and  see what activity is going on. So , if there is a person in the house hold looking at porn or anything questionable then the person who pays the bill could face heavy fines or jail time.

 

 I was thinking about this and I decided that if our children wanted email accounts then we would know the passwords, if they didn't want to give them to us then no email. the reason I feel this way is because with the Internet selling everything and all the "crazy" people out there we have to protect our children as parents. I have never looked into the email accounts as of yet, but if my daughters ever came up missing I would have them. I have checked to make sure the passwords are valid t from time to time to and that is it!

 But, I wouldn't think twice, about reading the emails if she changed in a negative way.

 

One last thing my space is NOT safe for any child or adult in my opinion. My sister in law children have pages. Their page is set up like this. In order to see the page u have to know the last name, once u enter that the page owner will either accept or decline ur permission. My husband was able to by pass this process in the matter of 5 mins. he said that anyone who knows about Internet and computers could do this, this became a huge concern for me. I spent a little bit of time looking at my space and there are a large amount of pre-teen and teens who have these pages, they didn't have the blocked pages for people who don't know them. If u have noticed that more children are getting in trouble or becoming missing have had a my space page. This even goes for adults. I only hope that more parents say no to my space. I know it is a lot harder to be a parent verses a friend but ,our children need us to provide a safe and loving homes. I believe that if ur child never gets upset with u for saying no or asking to many questions then u r not doing ur job.

 
November 9, 2007, 11:20 am CST

Safeguarding Your Kids from Internet Predators

Quote From: momoftwogirls

 

Hello,

 

I would like to add a little information to your question. I have 2 daughters and I am married. We tell our children that everything they own we let them. for example my oldest daughter says things like this is her room. We say as long as it is in our house ,and u r not  paying the bills, then we lend it to u. I also, check up on them if the r going someplace, I stop by at any given time and they know this. Trust has to be earned in our home.I know this my sound harsh however, we feel that to many parents let their children have to much freedom and feel it is wrong to know what ur child is doing. we believe that it is a parents responsibility to know who our children are with, where they  r going, who they  r going to be with and when will they like to be home. If more parents did this , less children would be running the streets and using drugs.

 

 

My husband is an I. T. admin. I must tell u most employers have a person reading every email that is sent out in comes in at the work place. There is software in which u can buy that will "hack" all passwords on that network. I felt that this was a violation of privacy. My husband says its not only because u r not suppose to send personal emails at the work place and they have the right to read them if u do. Plus if someone is send child porn or  planning to give discounts to family members  or anything that is questionable the employer could be held responsible. The FBI has the right to pull any activity on any IP address they want for however many years they need. I think that all Internet providers need to have the ability to do this by May 2008, I could be wrong about the date. So in reality we as adults have no privacy because they randomly pull IP addresses and  see what activity is going on. So , if there is a person in the house hold looking at porn or anything questionable then the person who pays the bill could face heavy fines or jail time.

 

 I was thinking about this and I decided that if our children wanted email accounts then we would know the passwords, if they didn't want to give them to us then no email. the reason I feel this way is because with the Internet selling everything and all the "crazy" people out there we have to protect our children as parents. I have never looked into the email accounts as of yet, but if my daughters ever came up missing I would have them. I have checked to make sure the passwords are valid t from time to time to and that is it!

 But, I wouldn't think twice, about reading the emails if she changed in a negative way.

 

One last thing my space is NOT safe for any child or adult in my opinion. My sister in law children have pages. Their page is set up like this. In order to see the page u have to know the last name, once u enter that the page owner will either accept or decline ur permission. My husband was able to by pass this process in the matter of 5 mins. he said that anyone who knows about Internet and computers could do this, this became a huge concern for me. I spent a little bit of time looking at my space and there are a large amount of pre-teen and teens who have these pages, they didn't have the blocked pages for people who don't know them. If u have noticed that more children are getting in trouble or becoming missing have had a my space page. This even goes for adults. I only hope that more parents say no to my space. I know it is a lot harder to be a parent verses a friend but ,our children need us to provide a safe and loving homes. I believe that if ur child never gets upset with u for saying no or asking to many questions then u r not doing ur job.

Well I'm not so happy with you saying to your daughters that it isn't their room, though technically correct. Why I don't like it is because it robbes your children of a safe place. I have a room now but mom and dad can take it away. It sounds stupid I know but children do not always think in a logical way. Also it is good for their self worth to have possesion of their things. It gives them a sense of control over a world which doesn't make sense at times.  (I am not advocating spoiling your children here but just giving them the basic security of their room and their stuff is something I think children need.)

 

And to the more children getting into trouble having my space is simpel top explain: Internet has gotten faster and cheaper so more people can afford the means to be able to get a myspace account (pc inet connection etc)

 

The media hypes internet and videogame violance giving it attention where none should be given (like the verginia tech shootings media claimed the shooter was a gamer when he really wasn't)

 

So hearing about it more doesn't mean that there is a connection, really it doesn't

 
November 15, 2007, 3:22 pm CST

u cannot always look at a childs myspace as long as the profile is set to private

Quote From: oet_gaol

first why would you want to? you can view his accounts without the passwords too. If you see something you don't like then you can let him take it off. There is no advantage in knowing the passwords in my opinion.

 

Then from a legal standpoint I don´t know. If I look at dutch (medical) law he has the right for instance to deny you access to his medical file from age 16 onward, but there is a high probebility doctors wouldn't show it to you if he didn't want you to at age 15 either.

first, if a profile on myspace or anything else is set to private, u cannot always check out the profile unless u r a friend of that person.  so knowing the passwords to these accounts is a necessity.  especially when u have a vulnerable daughter who is prone to believe anything anyone tells her. 

 

second, if my daughter want to have an account on these sites, she will supply me with her passwords, or she won't have one.  that is the easiest way for me to keep her safe, along with having family that r on her friends list check it every now and then so if i forget.  it is not always easy to keep track of these sites if u do not have their passwords for their accounts.

 
November 15, 2007, 3:24 pm CST

Safeguarding Your Kids from Internet Predators

Quote From: mstrong66

I would like to know if it is my right to know our 15 year olds passwords to these accts?
it is definitely ur right to know ur 15 year olds password to an account like that.  look what just happened with that one girl that was just on the Dr. Phil show.  u don't want that to happen to ur child. 
 
November 16, 2007, 3:30 pm CST

Safeguarding Your Kids from Internet Predators

Quote From: schlad1972

first, if a profile on myspace or anything else is set to private, u cannot always check out the profile unless u r a friend of that person.  so knowing the passwords to these accounts is a necessity.  especially when u have a vulnerable daughter who is prone to believe anything anyone tells her. 

 

second, if my daughter want to have an account on these sites, she will supply me with her passwords, or she won't have one.  that is the easiest way for me to keep her safe, along with having family that r on her friends list check it every now and then so if i forget.  it is not always easy to keep track of these sites if u do not have their passwords for their accounts.

You can watch them all you want like that but there are ways around the system. Beleieve me I know... If you want to protect them you should teach them of what could happen and how. Also give them the values of not doing those things. It works much better than being a police officer like that.
 
First | Prev | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Next | Last