At the risk of being a tech bore, you’re probably already aware from the press that October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month.
Yes, it is a mouthful, but it is an issue that is critical to your family if you have young children and here’s why.
As parents raising children in these daunting digital times, each day technology, both its benefits and its perils, affects the family dynamic. Twenty years ago, we had no clue that technology would evolve to claim such a dominant role in family life. We now find ourselves trying to align our values and goals with the cultural variables of technology, and the hazards that come with it. No doubt, it is a new kind of parenting that requires a new set of skills.
Technology is in our homes and it’s in our children’s hands almost every time we turn around. It continues to exert more influence over our children’s lives than even we may have! Now our families are wired and our communities, in large part, are online.
But with the growing influence technology has in our childrens’ lives, we’ve also gained the unprecedented benefits of better communication, access to learning, and increased connectivity to one another. Technology has joined us across the globe and given us peace of mind and resources in times of crisis. We’ve raised technically aware children with more access to information, education, and opportunity than any other generation in history.
The good news is that along with this shift, we’ve learned to quickly recognise and combat the criminal element that accompanies all technological on-line developments. As parents, we’re learning to value technology’s ability to advance as well as inhibit and isolate and we (seemingly) appear to be more determined to protect our families online. With wisdom gained from hard lessons learned, we now know that there is a need to proceed with more open minds, open eyes, and a keen awareness of the digital hazards that somehow escape our children’s sight lines.
While our children are more enamoured than cautious with their gadgets, it is our job as parents to be their eyes, ears, and internal alert systems until they’ve developed those cyber senses on their own.
Stay alert, keep an eye on your children and keep them safe.