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Internet and social media safety tips for parents

Internet and social media safety tips for parents

Dispatcher Files Every parent should be aware of some important internet and social media safety tips that could protect their children from potential harm. The internet can be a dangerous place and social media websites are no exception. There are several things you, as a parent, can do to make sure your children can participate

Dispatcher Files

Every parent should be aware of some important internet and social media safety tips that could protect their children from potential harm. The internet can be a dangerous place and social media websites are no exception. There are several things you, as a parent, can do to make sure your children can participate safely.

  • Learn about the Internet and social media
    Knowledge is power. Stay informed of the latest  websites and social media platforms that children make use of.
  • Familiarise yourself with the common acronyms children use online and in text messages. See the list of common acronyms below.
  • Get involved. Spend time online with your child, whether at home, at the library or at a computer centre in your community. Your involvement in your child’s life, including his or her online life, is the best insurance you can have for your child’s safety.
  • It is advisable to have your child’s computer in a family or frequently travelled room or touse a shared family computer. This tends to limit the visiting of potentially dangerous chat rooms and social networking websites. 
  • Talk to your child about the dangers of the internet.  Let them know that it is possible to meet internet predators online, especially with the use of private chat rooms or social networking websites. Let them know that if they are harassed, whether by someone known to them or a stranger, they must tell you immediately. You may, in turn, want to contact the proper authorities.
  • Obtain parental control tools from the following service providers:
    • Your Internet Service Provider (ISP). The best place to start is with the company that provides you with a connection to the Internet. 
  • Your local computer store. You can buy “blocking and filtering” software.
  • Web browsers. You can also use certain web browsers to enforce parental control systems.

Social media acronyms that parents should know

Most of the acronyms listed below have sexual meanings and motives behind them and may be used by predators. Many of the acronyms also show that teens have ways to make sure you do not catch a glimpse of something they may be sending or posting. The list below is only a sample of acronyms used on social media websites. There are various websites that provide updated lists which you can take note of.

GNOC – Get Naked On Cam
TDTM – Talk Dirty To Me
NIFOC – Naked In Front Of Computer
PAW – Parents Are Watching
PIR – Parent In Room
POS – Parent Over Shoulder

CD9/Code 9 – Parent/Adult around
ASL(R P) – Age Sex Location (Race/Picture)
(L)MIRL  – (Let us) meet in real life
MOS – Mom Over Shoulder
P911 – Parent emergency
PRON – Porn
S2R – Send To Receive (pictures)
FYEO – For Your Eyes Only

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*Dispatcher files are reports detailing the experience of the dispatcher as they deal with emergencies and so are recorded after the fact.

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