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Published on Oct 04, 2021
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Sophia Clark

9 Reasons Parental Controls Are Critical for Your Family

In today's world, online life has become the norm, and nearly everything is done online. Almost everyone uses digital devices, from children to older people, and children these days use the internet for almost everything.

They use it to communicate with their friends, for entertainment, schoolwork, and social media platforms. So, your kids can gain knowledge using digital devices such as smartphones or computers and the internet. It also helps them to stay socialize at a distance and keeps them entertained.

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Even with so many positives, technology has negative effects on children. The internet can be a dangerous place for children, and they are innocent, lack common sense, and are more vulnerable to cyberbullying, sextortion and pornography.

Due to such dangers, Digital Parenting is Essential for Teens whether they Like it or Not. And Parental Control is one of the best ways to digital parenting. So what is Parental Control? And why is parental control important?

What are Parental Controls?

Parental controls are software or apps designed to monitor children's digital devices. They provide facilities for monitoring their screen time, their device applications, and usage.

With the help of parental control, You can filter and block inappropriate content on your child's device. You will ensure internet safety for your kids and promote a safe search so they do not access the internet's undesirable content.

There are different kinds of parental control software available in the market. Some of the popular parental control apps are as follows:

9 Reasons Why Parental Controls are Critical

Here are some of the reasons why parental controls are critical for your family:

1. Cyberbullying

According to research by enough.org, a staggering number of 60% of children have witnessed some form of cyberbullying. Only 10% have reported the bullying they have witnessed to their parents.

Another study suggested that 47% of children have been victims of cyberbullying. Most of these cases yet go unreported. parental controls are critical for your family:

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Cyberbullying is a form of bullying that happens online. It can range anywhere from posting by ridiculing someone to sending hateful rumors about someone. Cyberbullying often takes place regarding race, appearance, religion, sexuality, or weight. These actions impact the self-esteem of children resulting in anxiety and depression.

Your child might be involved in cyberbullying or be cyberbullied, which is detrimental for both bully and victim. This is something that may even affect them later in their life. Therefore, you should intervene to prevent this from happening to your child.

With the help of parental controls, you can monitor your kids' text messages and social media activities. If you see anything suspicious in their online activities, you can take action. You should talk to your teens about dealing with online predators and teach them what to do if they are being bullied on social media.

You will also be able to monitor the gaming forums and platforms of your children. Online bullying happens most often on these platforms too. So, let your kids know about online gaming risks.

Hence by using parental controls, you can prevent your child from getting bullied online and also stop your child from bullying someone online.

2. Malware

Malware is software that causes harm to you and your device, which is available online and is sometimes sent through emails or is embedded in links. When you download the email attachment or open the suspicious link, malware enters your device.

Various types of malware are there, but the most common forms of this malware are adware and spyware. Adware is software that enters your device and records the sites you visit. This information is collected and sold to advertisers. You will receive annoying advertisements according to your collected information.

Spyware is another form of malware that is more dangerous as it collects your personal information from your device. It then sends this sensitive information like your credit card details, bank details, and social security number to a cyber thief. This information might be later used for identity theft, fraud, or scams.

Children are unaware of these issues, and they may enter confidential details too on random sites. That's why parental control software is critical. Parental control apps prevent your children from receiving suspicious links. They filter out such suspicious links or block them entirely.

Parental control also lets you monitor the personal email of your children. With the help of this, you will be able to monitor the email and attachments they receive. You can warn them about these malware emails they receive and check their emails regularly.

3. Inappropriate Sites

The web is an ocean of content where you can find numerous appropriate sites and inappropriate websites. And you don't want your kids to access inappropriate sites like a site with pornographic content, a site that lets you gamble online, or a site of the dark web.

This may not be the right age for your children to access pornographic content. They might develop a severe porn addiction as they are too young to control their urges.

The internet also consists of gambling websites that offer you to gamble online by paying money electronically. These sites may develop a gambling addiction in your children and might waste their time and money in gambling.

The dark web consists of selling dark objects. These sites involve selling and buying weapons, child pornography, human trafficking, and illicit drugs.

So, this is why digital parenting becomes a necessity. With the help of parental control software, you can set age filters on your kid's device and block all this inappropriate content. You can either manually filter out such inappropriate sites or use automatic functions in apps to block them.

4. Digital addiction

The most common addiction seen in children today is an addiction to social media sites and video games. Digital addiction refers to an unhealthy amount of time spent on a digital medium. Children obsessed with posting or using social media, or playing video games.

Some of the common forms of digital addictions in children are:

  • Tiktok addiction
  • Instagram addiction
  • Snapchat addiction
  • Fortnite addiction
  • Facebook addiction
  • Texting addiction
  • Netflix addiction
  • YouTube addiction

So, to remove addiction and control their usage from a digital app, you can use specific Parental controls catered to that particular app. Such as Tiktok Parental Control, Snapchat Parental Control, Fortnite Parental Controls, Facebook Parental Controls, Youtube Parental Control, etc. Parental Controls can be used to monitor and limit screen time. It can help limit their unhealthy obsession.

5. Phishing

Phishing refers to the cyberthreat done by sending website links through text or emails that pose legitimate websites. Cyber thieves often send them to steal the login and account details of your social media handles.

Phishing sites seem very legit and are often sent through the email of someone you might recognize. They impersonate the accounts of someone you trust to get your details. They get your details once you open the link and sign in to the website.

For example, You get an urgent request in your email that you need to log into your Facebook account right now. When you click on the link given in the email, it will not take you to the real Facebook login page but rather take you to the fake one they have built. When you enter your email id and password into the fake login page, the hacker will receive your account details. They can use this to hack into your account.

These phishing hackers can then use your details for impersonation and to perform criminal activities. Children are often targeted since they are less likely than adults to identify such activities.

Hence you can monitor with parental control apps the emails and messages of your children to prevent them from these predators.

6. Scams

Many of you may have a face scam of pop-up advertisement for an email that shows you have won an iPad. These types of scams are meant to trick you into believing you are worthy of winning.

These scams are usually targeted at vulnerable people like children and offer them different things like new expensive mobile phones. Similarly, they might say you have won a free gaming pass, free video games, or a trip to their nearby amusement park. These scams can lure your children by determining their interest in certain things.

These scams can offer them whatever they have won, but ask them for their credentials. Some scams are known for asking the children the credit card information of their parents. They might also ask for bank details in return for their gift.

Some of these scams target your children while they are doing their schoolwork or are playing games online. They can also receive these messages through emails.

Hence you can prevent your children from getting scammed with parental controls apps. You can monitor their online activities and emails and filter out such scam emails

7. Cyber-flashing

Cyber-flashing refers to sending inappropriate media files through the internet or mobile devices. They often involve photos or videos of genitalia. These files may also include sending of pornographic content without the consent of the receiver.

They are either sent by people that your children befriend on the internet or random strangers. Sending these photos or videos without the consent of the receiver is a serious crime.

In many countries, cyber flashing is taken as an act of sexual harassment or as a cybercrime. This might occur if you add someone you don't know over the internet, so aware your kids of fake friends on social media.

Cyberflashing can also be an act of a pedophile. Hence, this is a very serious issue that needs to be addressed as it may affect your child's mental health. You can know more about cyber-flashing in our blog.

Hence you must intercept text messages from your children's phones. You should check if they have befriended someone that you do not recognize.

8. Accidental sharing of private information

Younger children are not aware of what they should and should not share on the internet. They might accidentally share private information online like their contact numbers, location, credentials.

Sharing private information like these can put them into a sticky situation. This information might fall into the hands of the wrong person about which Children are unaware.

Children might share personal photos or videos with public access. So, some fake people on your kids' friend list can download and misuse your photos.

Hence, parental controls are required to monitor if your child is oversharing. With this, you can monitor if your child is maintaining a public or private profile.

9. Cyber-predators

Cyber-predators are sexual predators who act online. These people often stalk children through the internet. They use the help of the internet to track and communicate with your children. They might use their innocence and trust to exploit them.

Children are the main and easy target of cyber predators to sexually, physically, or mentally abuse them. So, to protect your kids from online predators, parental controls can help you by monitoring your child's devices.

Conclusion

Thus, the above nine reasons justify why parental controls are critical for your family. Use parental control software like fenced.ai, to monitor your child's every device activity, from their phone calls to their social media activity so, that you can protect your kid from every possible aspect.

You can even use inbuilt parental control features available in phones and applications such as Parental Controls on Google Chrome, Parental Controls for Windows 10, and many more tips on digital wellbeing. Thus, parental control is critical for your family.

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Sophia Clark

Sophia Clark is a writer from Sydney, kid-lit enthusiast, and mom of three kids who loves to writes about motherhood, parenting, and big feelings.