Perhaps the biggest internet threat isn’t your identity, it’s the threat to your children and grandchildren. Guardians of children are better off being proactive and preparing their defenses against online threats.

Bullies aren’t just in the school yard, they are also online. Predators are a constant threat, and now mobile devices can give them an extra “in” to vulnerable children. Knowing that, and knowing what form that threat can take is important information for responsible adults to have. It’s also important to know what parental controls are available. Here are a few tips and links from the Consumer Information section of

  • Your communication link to your kids should be better than the best internet connection. So if your kids are online, make sure you protect your communication link. Talk to your kids, openly and honestly. Teach them how to use the internet without being used by it.
  • If your kids are online, they’re old enough to know about security practices, phishing, P2P file-sharing and apps. Here’s a link to help you help them avoid the dangers.
  • Do your kids use a mobile phone? Find out how to manage their risks.
  • Are your kids accessing online worlds, also known as virtual worlds, intended for adults? Find out how to find out.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is responsible for consumer protection and has extensive resources posted on its website. There are hundreds of pages of helpful content, but the best place to start is the Kid’s Online Safety page.

The local Catawba county school system will also have information and local resources and contacts such as Catawba Parenting.