It is no secret that social networking websites are popular among kids. They offer the chance for them to express who they are for all their friends to see. They can share their interests, photos, and events they find significant with others. Plus, they can chat with their friends through the messenger app such as you’ll find on Facebook.
I bought an iPhone for my teenage son complete with a data plan so that he can also enjoy social networking. However, I know there is a dark side to social networking sites and this is why I put the Mobile Spy keylogger app on his iPhone before I even gave it to him.
The Threats to Children in the Social Networking Realm
The concept behind social networking sites is good but unfortunately, like I said before, there is a dark side to them that includes these threats to your children:
- Sharing too much personal information
- Inflammatory postings
- Cyber-stalkers, cyber-bullies, and sexual predators.
- False profiles such as older adults creating profiles that portray them as the same age as my kid
- Pictures that reveal too much
- Parents uninformed about the latest features and apps
- Friends that your kids never met in person
I had read about these threats here and there but they became all too real after installing the Mobile Spy cell phone tracking app on his iPhone.
What Is a Parent to Do?
Several of these threats became a reality once I saw what was happening through my Mobile Spy control panel. For example, I found out that my son had several friends on Facebook that were bad news once I looked at their profiles. He also had questionable friends and followers on WhatsApp and Twitter.
I also discovered that while my son was only trying to be funny with some of his postings, sometimes they were offensive to his aunts and uncles who were also his friends on Facebook.
Here are my recommendations for you as a parent if you have children with smartphones using them for social networking activities:
1. Install Mobile Spy software on their smartphone. This is what I did. Through my subscriber control panel it showed me all of my son’s friends on Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp to include the complete texts of their message exchanges.
2. Educate your kids about the rules of etiquette when it comes to postings. You will see the texts and have a chance to correct their language when you see abusive or inflammatory posts.
3. Never let your children have friends they have not met in person. Always ask questions about their social network friends. You will be able to see their social network friends through the Mobile Spy control panel.
4. Teach your kids that photos taken are out of their control once posted. My son didn’t take racy self-shots and post them but his girlfriend did. You never know if who sees those shots is a sexual predator or if they could cause trouble with their school’s leadership.
5. Stay up-to-date on the latest in social networking technology. I don’t want my teenager to be able to circumvent my rules for social networking because I don’t understand an app like Facebook or WhatsApp.
6. Report suspicious behavior to the appropriate authorities. Mobile Spy allows me to be proactive and tackle problems such as cyber-bullies before they become more serious.
For me, it is simply a matter of tracking with Mobile Spy cell phone monitoring software and using the information I see through my control panel with regard to social networking to guide and educate my son. It is much better than letting threats become actual problems that grow larger without me ever knowing about them.