At a time when minors have wide access to cell phones and tablets, Many parents try to stay current with what children see on the Internet and how long they stay connected.
This week, the World Health Organization (WHO) released its first report on physical activity in children and recommended that adults promote more play and exercise in children in exchange for their entertainment on the screens.
The WHO has warned of the consequences of a child spending too much time in front of electronic equipment, like the television, the cell phone, the computer and the consoles, and advised not to leave the babies in front of the screens.
While addressing childhood obesity, as the WHO argues, is a strong reason for parents to care more and monitor the use of electronic devices in minors, it is also to protect them from threats rather than content. videos or sexual materials.
Maximiliano Cantis, a specialist at cyber security firm Eset, explains that There are two ways to protect minors on the Internet: one is technological and the other is the way of dialogue. In addition to family conversations, parents can rely on parental control tools to set navigation times, establish which sites may or may not access, and place specific limits on categories such as alcohol, sex, or violence.
"Apps today have artificial intelligence that, as it is updated, analyzes content and websites not suitable for minors," says Cantis, who also explains that these tools can be linked to mobile phones and allow, for example, "Connect the child's profile with the parents so they can see what social networks your child is accessing, for how long and more features, which, if necessary, can block or limit."
But with that, Cantis argues, it can also increase the level of parental control.
In Colombia, The Supreme Court of Justice, within its jurisprudence, allows parents to verify the e-mails and social networks of their minor children without this constituting a violation of privacy.
According to the survey on perception and uses of the internet, which this week presented the concessionaire to manage the Colombian domain and the National Center of Consulting (CNC), 90% of the parents surveyed consider that they should be able to freely access private accounts of their children in order to protect them.
"For this to not become invasive, children need to understand why parents need to know who they are talking to, for which parents should be aware of threats such as cyberbullying or sextology," explains Cantis, who points out that dialogue , the conciliation and the establishment of rules of cellular use by minors are fundamental.
"Another important tip is that parents tell children that every time they upload something to the Internet, keep in mind that it is registered and can be downloaded and even viralized. Everything that goes up leaves a mark that begins to be part of the record of the boy's life on the internet and can turn against him, "he adds.
On the other hand, current electronic devices also have the function of geolocation, with which parents can know exactly where the cell phone is, and therefore where your child is.
Besides that, There are children's versions of platforms like YouTube Kids, which have additional mechanisms that filter content so they do not show things that are not suitable for minors.
Everything that goes up leaves a mark that begins to be part of the record of the boy's life on the internet and can turn against him
How to activate a parental control?
Options such as setting inappropriate content locks and even remotely removing an Internet connection to prevent the child from browsing for longer than agreed upon, as well as receiving reports with data on how much time children spend on a particular application would be a tool to protect them and accompany them in digital spaces.
These applications, available to mobile devices, are more than just a filter that converts adult-safe applications to minors. The idea of establishing controls is actually not to allow access to or download of applications, to display pages or activities in games that are not suitable for age-group targeting.
Here are some options for parents to set technical limits on mobile devices:
The Family Link app, created by Google, allows you to configure applications that are allowed for use by minors on another phone. In addition to being able to control the usage time of the device or set a time to suspend its use, the application will allow parents to locate the child, as long as they have the phone with them.
This & # 39; app & # 39; works with Android devices from version 7.0 (Nougat) onwards. If minors do not have a Google account, parents can create one for more than 13 years. The application links the child's cell phone to that of the parent or guardian and then enables activity reports to be configured from a web browser. Also compatible for iOS devices.
The Qustodio application has a free version with which parents can protect a device and set basic protection controls, such as Android settings, or prohibit anonymous browsing.
To prevent your child from looking at your own device settings, Qustodio asks the responsible adult to keep a password to make modifications.
After creating a profile for the child, the visitor can not only view activity history, but also choose categories of sites that will be blocked, including pornography, drugs, gambling, violent content, weapons, blasphemy, or alcohol. Parents can also block, for example, participation in forums.
In the Premium version, the application seeks to extend protection for multiple devices and enable more advanced features such as location tracking, text message and call control, or application control. Also compatible with Apple devices.
Through the free trial, you can use the features of the software at no charge for one month. You can review browsing activity, know which sites your children visit, block inappropriate sites, know which applications are downloaded to establish controls for the type of applications and how long they are in use, even allowing remote locking.
This application offers a number of keywords with which you can better understand what the child is most looking for and how to analyze their preferences.. Also compatible with iOS devices.
LINDA PATIÑO AND MARIA PAULINA ARANGO
On twitter: @TechnosphereET