Tuesday, June 16, 2015

How Do We Keep Our Kids Safe Online? Q&A with BGCA's Cyber Ambassadors #CyberSafe

"“I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for Boys & Girls Clubs of America. I received a promotional item to thank me for my participation.”"

As parents of the digital age we face a whole new unique set of challenges parents never had to worry about before, online safety and information sharing. As a child of the 80’s and 90’s I lived in a simpler time of technology, whose reach was just being developed. My 90lb PC screen and desktop only allowed for some basic typing, my parents had no interested in that dial-up technology that kept the phone lines clogged. My portable technology went as far as a beeper and boy did I think I was cool when I got voicemail added to my plan. Times were changing, but not so much that parents weren’t always sure how to cope. The phone would ring and they would know who was on the other line. And for punishment, I had to use the phone with the giant cord! My friends were made in school and face to face interactions were the only way.

As a mother of 5, I think, I’ve kept up with technology well. I use my cell phone and laptop as much as the next and can game like I’m still 14. But this doesn’t mean I understand any better than the next parent, the ins and outs of online safety and the different set of struggles our tweens and teens face within the new era of technology that allows you to document everything, find anything, and even track down your location.

Are you a #Cybersafe Parent?

Throughout the month of June, the Boys and Girls Clubs of America in partnership with Sprint are bringing the tough topic of Internet safety to the forefront and addressing some of the problems that our tweens and teens face today in this cyber world. We’ve all seen the stories of cyberbullying, inappropriate picture sharing and online predators. So how do we, as parents, allow our kids to safety engage online, whether through their phones, laptops or gaming systems? How do we go about having the new tough “talk” of our time? Well, these are the just some of the questions the Cyber Safety Ambassadors, a panel of Boys & Girls Club teens from around the world, have been set up to answer. Because every teen deserves a #cybersafe future.

On the BGCA’s Cyber Safe Site you can find the resources you, as a parent need to tackle the tough subjects and a quick quiz to see how many issues you’ve addressed with your children. Most of us haven’t experienced the new dangers and problems that our teens are facing, and it’s OK to be unsure on how to tackle such topics with so many different areas of concern. The BGCA’s Cyber Safe site will help you through the hard questions, provide the resources needed to better understand the unique challenges our teens face, and the Cyber Saftey Ambassadors, of expert teens, are even available to address your personal safety concerns and bring to light Internet safety awareness.

Asked & Answered

We all know are kids are cyber savvy, they were born into a world where everything and anything is right at your fingertips; where playing a game with your best friend no longer involves being in the same room, house, or even country! The Cyber Safety Ambassadors want to help you become a #CyberSafe parent. Right now you can head on over to the BGCA’s Cyber Safe site and submit your personal questions to the Cyber Safety Ambassadors for real answers. And as an added incentive when you submit your questions you’ll be enter for a chance to win an iPad mini and $500 to the Boys & Girls Club of your choice!

What steps do you take to be a #CyberSafe parent? What do you want to know to help you become a better informed parent, when it comes to Internet safety?


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