“Experts have suggested the best approach to educating young people about privacy is to provide kids with the skills to critically evaluate situations on their own, as opposed to imposing a set of rules to follow or technological solutions designed to block access.” Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada
Many students are not concerned about giving away too much personal information. They often feel that putting too much personal information online will not actually hurt them.
Here are some key recommendations for guiding and supporting your child to protect their privacy:
- Be aware of the websites and apps your child is using.
- Try the websites and apps yourself so that you understand how they function.
- Teach your child how to modify the privacy settings on the websites and apps they are using.
- Make restricting privacy settings on websites and apps a habit.
- On a cell phone, teach your child to restrict which apps can access location services, contacts, folders, etc.
- Emphasize the importance of password protecting their mobile devices and laptops.
- Teach your child to think before they post. Do they really want to put that photo online?
- Explain that what they do now may affect future relationships, post-secondary acceptance and careers.
- Ensure that your child understands that free apps/resources make money by gathering and/or selling information about users.
- Let your child know that you are there to support them if they make a privacy mistake.
- Set a good example.
From the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada: Tips for parents