Kids Are Targeted by Hackers: How to Protect Your Child Online

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No matter the age of your kids – we’re going to take a wild guess that, in many instances, your kids are more tech-savvy than you are. Have you ever seen a toddler know how to swipe on an iPhone before they can form grammatically correct sentences? You get the picture. It’s both impressive and alarming.

The problem is this: kids are still kids. With an increase in children online, hackers have identified kids as a target for ransomware attacks. And it turns out that even with tech-savvy kids, they can still be ransomware targets just like the rest of us. Let’s look at what this means for parents and how you can protect your child online. 

The Cost of Kids Online

Individuals 20 years old and younger lost a whopping $101.4 million to online scams last year, according to a study by Social Catfish. That’s a heck of a lot. Where have these numbers evolved from? Just four years early, the same age group lost $8.3 million. That’s a 1,126% increase in less than five years. The increase is the largest compared to all other age groups for the same time period.

These numbers indicate one key takeaway: this is an issue that parents should pay attention to.

How to Protect Your Child Online

  1. Discuss internet safety with them–including signs of phishing
  2. Develop an “online plan” for your child’s use of computers, phones, and other devices.
  3. Supervise your child’s use of the Internet. 
  4. Review all apps they download, including games and social media.
  5. Monitor their social media accounts and know their log-in information.
  6. Adjust privacy settings and use parental controls for online games, apps, social media sites, and electronic devices.
  7. Tell children to avoid sharing personal information, photos, and videos online in public forums or with people they do not know in real life. Explain to your children that images posted online will permanently stay on the internet.
  8. Encourage your child to talk to you if they are unsure about something online or feel unsafe.

IT Support for You–And Your Business

Often, the only difference between someone that is scammed and someone who isn’t is whether people understand the signs. Having an open conversation with your child about their use of the Internet, apps, and games is a great starting place.

Whether you are a parent or a business owner, PK Tech provides valuable insights into the world of IT and cybersecurity. Follow along with our bi-weekly blogs here. To speak with a member of our team about managed IT services, get in touch with us here