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Should we use parent control apps or choose to trust our kids?

After explaining our kids how to be safe on internet, do you think it's appropriate to use parent control apps to observe what they're doing and dig the log files?

3 years ago

5 experts and 1 parent have answered

expert answer
Matt Wells expert
Matt Wells eLearning Coordinator AU
Education expert

I firmly believe that we should not be using "Apps" to mind our children. Kids are clever beasts and as soon as we start using technology in this way they WILL find a way around it.

In my opinion, this is a question first and foremost about human behaviour and relationships. It is important that we build our relationships with our children (both as parents and educators) - and that involves developing trust.

It is important that our children can feel they can come to us if they are having a problem - something that is not likely to happen if they feel we are spying on them or don't trust them.

The online world IS scary - but so is the REAL world!!! In fact, the real world can cause a lot more physical harm. Dealing with my teenage children growing up in an online world is far less worrying than dealing with them learning to drive!!!

Just a few thoughts...

3 Reply Share:
Experience 3 years ago
expert answer
Leonie Smith expert
Leonie Smith Cyber safety consultant AU
E-safety expert

I have no problem with parents settings up the Parental Control settings on devices for younger kids. They can be a good safeguard, along with supervision and education for both parent and child. The apps that monitor your child's every move online and in messaging can be incredibly intrusive particularly for older kids who will feel overly monitored. A bit like if we were following them around with a camera 24/7 and recording all their conversations and movements. I have only helped parents with monitoring software in cases of extreme crisis, where the child has had a serious suicide attempt, and severe issues. This is to basically help keep them alive long enough so that they can gain the help they need. Otherwise I'd say, use sensible parental controls that come with the devices when under 13years old, and then gradually relax them when your child is ready to handle more adult decisions. Each child is different some will require more supervision and others less so.

3 Reply Share:
Experience 3 years ago
expert answer
Chris Puttick expert
Chris Puttick CEO, chief assistant to the duck GB
E-safety expert

Yes, of course you should put boundaries around your child as they grow up - but part of growing up is knowing when to relax those boundaries, and working out how to nurture a trusting relationship that facilitates those boundaries being relaxed. Part of the maturing process needs those boundaries to be relaxed, and maintaining too tight a boundary at the wrong age will have primarily negative consequences. Like web filters for teenagers, for example! We talk about the right approach to web content access being similar to the physical boundaries you set around your child during the early years and through primary school, starting with playpens and walking harnesses, progressing through road crossing, cycling and going to school on their own. The trick is to get to the point of removing those boundaries at the same time your child is ready to deal safely with the extra leeway and associated increase in risk.

2 Reply Share:
Fact 3 years ago
expert answer
Sedgrid Lewis expert
Sedgrid Lewis Internet Safety Expert Rex, US
E-safety expert

You have to monitor your teen's app. Trust is not the issue. Your child is not the problem it is the other children that has access to your child through apps

0 Reply Share:
Experience 3 years ago
0 Reply Share:
Fact 6 months ago
Robby Fine
Robby Fine

In God we trust, the rest we check:) In my opinion, we, parents are responsible for our kids' health and safety. Such parental control apps like https://www.refog.com/parental-monitoring-software.html keep us aware of what our kids are doing online and whom they're talking to.

0 Reply Share:
Experience 4 months ago

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