Child’s Future Reputation

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Your child’s future reputation will be set by things that were done the past

Make sure that you protect it!

It’s easy, as a parent, to tell your child things that will help them when they’re older – you may even hear your own parents’ voices coming from your mouth! What’s not easy is placing yourself in your child’s position, and remember that whatever your parents said went in one ear and out the other. Comments like “first impressions count” and “protect your reputation, you’ll need it when you’re older” aren’t important to children, who can’t see past tomorrow. The future, to them, is nothing much to worry about. Children are impulsive; they act now and regret later. All this makes it dangerous for a child to have a social media account (in some instances, it’s actually illegal).

Imagine how difficult it is, then, to tell a child that anything they post on social media can come back to bite them later on. The silly comment or ‘harmless’ teasing might become an issue next week or next year – and it is usually too late to take it back. Once something is posted online, it’s there forever. It can’t be 100% removed. And when a comment hurts another person, it’s very difficult to apologise when that person is embarrassed or humiliated on front of their friends. The average teen has 425 Facebook friends (some they have never met). If just one of those friends posts private information (in almost 25% of cases this occurs), or the teen themself posts personal information (in 55% of cases) that’s a lot of people who know something they shouldn’t.

If your child is online, they need to think now about how they are being perceived. If they are of an age where casual employment might be a factor, potential employees research applicants and if their Facebook page is full of cyberbullying or inappropriate posts, the employer may think twice. Your child’s online profile is an extension of their real life persona. Cultivate it from early on.

Additionally, how your child uses their mobile phone can be of concern – girls send more than 220 texts a week, and some of those texts will be images. If they’re in a relationship, there’s a chance that those images may be compromising in nature – and just like a hurtful post on social media, once an inappropriate image has been sent it’s almost impossible to recall and delete. That photo of your child could potentially be in cyberspace forever – forever potentially ruining any chances of a career in certain fields, sporting opportunities and educational prospects, and being used for any nefarious means.

So how do you protect the reputation of a child without destroying that precarious trust many parents feel is already threatened? Fortunately, there are software options available that don’t rely on knowing passwords to social media accounts in order to work. They’re cloud-based, and can monitor an account for words that may be deemed as offensive or inappropriate. The software can keep an eye out for instances where an image is sent, or when a conversation contains sexually explicit or derogatory terms. The parent is alerted in real time, and allows conversations to be initiated. This could prevent any damage to a child’s reputation before it occurs, and before it’s too late.

So what can we do to protect and beware if our child/ren encounters issues on social media …how do we keep them safe?

SafeKidsPro intelligently monitors Facebook, Twitter and Instagram posts and messages – before they are seen – alerting parents of potential issues so they can intervene early to minimise potential damage. Parents also gain advance warning on messages that contain threatening, sexual, derogatory and/or offensive content or intent that may damage their reputation as well as ensuring their kids are safe from potential cyberbullying, stranger danger, predatory interactions and grooming.

SafeKidsPro enables parents to adjust the sensitivity, type and frequency of detections to the level they deem appropriate for each child. That way parents only get the messages of concern – not the harmless ones, as parents are busy!