Saturday, September 14, 2013

Spy on your Kids' Online Activities

The most viewed story at the StarTribune this morning is a story of a girl that committed suicide because she was being cyber-bullied.  The mother of the girl in this case was clueless as to the magnitude of her daughter's situation.

Full disclosure - I don't have kids, and it's easy for me to say this.  Understood.  But if you do have kids, for the love of God, spy on their online activity.

Your kids are clicks away from pedophiles, bullies, drugs, and a whole host of life-threatening engagements.  Just a couple of clicks.  They need to know that you know exactly what they're doing, and that inappropriate behavior will be quickly discovered and punished.

Spare me the privacy and trust arguments.  The internet changed all of that.  Those days are over.  Just ask our federal government (hi, NSA!).  This isn't about rights or freedom or privacy or any other of those sanctimonious ideas.  It is about keeping your kids alive and safe.

There are tons of technical options for tacking your kids - some of them free, and many simple to set up and use.  A quick search on "internet tracking software," will get you started.  

It's easy, it's important, and it's common.  Your employer does it, your government does it, and you need to do it as well. 

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Please feel free to include any thoughts you may have. Know, however, that kiddos might be reading this, so please keep the adult language to yourself. I know, for me to ask that language is clean is a stretch...