Teenage Challenge

7 Essential Ways to Protect Teens from Cybersecurity Threats

What teenagers need to know about cybersecurity

Ever wondered why kid safety apps are increasingly gaining popularity amongst parents? Why are parents hellbent on sneaking into a kid’s phone? Well, most of us know the answers, yet teens encounter cyber criminals online.

Why is Cybersecurity an Important Discussion?

Teenagers are more tech-savvy than adults, is universal knowledge. Their grip on technological gadgets is far better than any middle-aged man today. This is hardly a surprise because kids of today’s generation are capable of learning and grasping concepts faster than the previous generations.

It is somewhat normal than shocking to find high schoolers busy in their cell phones. Most of their work and entertainment are available because of cell phones. However, the primary concern a teen’s parents may have is the choices children make online.

For instance, talking to a stranger on Facebook purposely or unintentionally is a risk which most teens are oblivious to. Most kids find this habit cool and “trendy” and follow the herd blindly, only to fall into a bigger pothole.

Cybersecurity issues are lurking around children. In spite of the awareness created in schools and colleges, teens are oblivious of the problems and continue to get into uninvited trouble.

A large number of teenagers face embarrassment because of leaked confidential photographs or videos. Although it is unintentional, yet children are vulnerable to such incidents.

Cybersecurity is a threat to your child’s computer systems which may either result in losing data or damaging the hardware and software. Many hackers take control of the system to play around with big organizations to pull out a hefty sum of money as ransom.

Cybercriminals are making their way through phones and laptops of kids, testing kids innocent attitude and little awareness about computer systems.

What Are Some Ways to Protect Teens from Cybersecurity Threats?

  • Password Safety

Everything else is secondary when it comes to passwords.

Although, many ignore the importance of having a password-protected phone, risking the same ignorance with teenagers is out of the question. 

Not all, but most teenagers have embarrassing moments and photos on their phones which parents are not proud of. You can’t blame your children; the age is such that they commit honest mistakes. 

However, what parents can actually do to protect kids’ data from the wrong hands is by setting a password on kids’ phone. Preferably, a 10-character long password, not containing kid’s name, date of birth, or any ID number.

  • Sharing credentials

One huge blunder committed by teens is sharing their credentials with those “reliable friends.”

 It’s natural to like friends and fall for false appearances, but often these credentials are misused and go into wrong hands.

Even though children are gullible and innocent, it is the parent’s responsibility to educate kids on the importance of credentials.

Most kids are casual with their email Ids and social media accounts. Furthermore, teens share credentials with their love partners blindly without any fear of the consequences.

  • Anti-Virus schemes

Teens are addressed topics on virus and malicious codes in their computer lectures, yet the attitude of ignorance takes a toll.

In spite of the many reminders on purchasing and installing an Antivirus program in the system, kids do not put heed to such advice.

They take the suggestion with a pinch of salt and end up losing precious data or control on their cell phones.

Anti-virus acts like a watchman and filters threat on your gadget. In the presence of sound software, one can be relieved that a virus attacks the system.

  • Camera

Some parents and teens are unaware of the fact that phone and laptop cameras can be hacked and used for the wrong reasons.

The front camera on laptops is unprotected and gets hacked very often. It is safe to assume that the camera focus needs to be hidden at all times unless used.

The same goes for the front camera on the phone. One must be cautious about how you conduct yourself in front of the camera.

If possible, avoid performing an intimate act in front of the camera or click pictures and add it to the gallery. Both cases are risky and best avoided by kids.

  • App lockers

There are specific apps that are personal, and falling into the wrong hands means uninvited trouble. 

The problem with the internet world is that once your child’s information is online, it stays online forever, even if you think you deleted it, which can also have unwanted repercussions on your child’s online footprint. 

Certain apps offer a unique feature to cleverly lock apps such as WhatsApp, Gallery, Journal, Contacts, Social media apps, and likewise

App lockers also play a smart role in locking kid’s privacy from unwanted eyes like siblings. Even if they try to break into the phone, they are unable to reach the WhatsApp messages.  

  • Social Media settings 

Powerful hackers target social media platforms to create havoc in an individual’s life or a company’s journey. It is beyond a parent’s capacity to stop cunning unethical hackers and individuals to stay away from the kid’s social media account. 

However, to safeguard your child’s valuable commodity online, it is preferable to set the security settings on all accounts. As a precaution, limit the engagement with strangers on any social media platform.

Such settings will help in the long run in maintaining healthy relations and protect teens from avoidable security threats online.

  • Payment platforms

In case you are wondering why kids need safety tips on payment portals. Then here is your answer.

A large number of parents allow children to make independent transactions with the help of their parent’s card details. What parents forget is advising kids on how to make safe transactions.

Not only card details but parents need to help kids in understanding the ways to evaluate a secure website and what certifications to look for before giving out card details. 

As far as OTP is concerned, teens must not disclose the details with any friend or acquaintance without a parent’s knowledge or will.

How to Explain Stubborn Teenagers The Importance of Cybersecurity?

In the different age group of kids, generally, teens heavily use the internet. High usage of the online world exposes teens to various cybersecurity threats.

Risk of virus, malware, and malicious codes are lurking around on various platforms and channels in the online world.

Parents need to expose teens to cybersecurity issues with the help of videos and other reading materials available online.

Educating children at the right age is the right way to handle online threats lurking around teenagers. 

However, if you are dealing with notorious kids at home and need an immediate solution to combat cyber threats, apply parental control on your kids.

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This may not change your teen immediately but give ample time to educate your children on the dos and don’ts of the internet.

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