Businesses that provide internet access to kids have a moral responsibility to provide adequate safeguards. From the content that can be viewed to the potential for inappropriate content, the internet can be a dangerous place for young people. As a business, you should explore options for creating a safe online environment for your young patrons. Children are naturally curious and exist in online cultures that most adults likely do not understand. While it is important to give kids space to learn and grow, there are internet spaces that pose real life dangers for younger users. Additionally, you run the risk of facing system infiltration from nefarious players if the internet activities of children are not closely monitored and controlled.
It is important to remember that although kids may not be emotionally mature enough to deal with certain situations, most are more internet savvy than many adults. Simple precautions may not suffice to prevent vulnerable children from entering online spaces that are dangerous.
Online Child Exploitation
One of the major issues with letting kids have access to unfettered internet is the potential for online exploitation. Adults posing as children can manipulate young users into doing things that they wouldn’t otherwise. Children are often too afraid in these situations to tell an adult in authority about exploitative experiences online.
Putting safeguards in place to monitor the activities of young internet users is one way to protect them from predators. You can also block access to certain sites or limit internet access in general. If the purpose of allowing internet access is for structured learning or access to specific resources, internet access can be restricted to keep kids safe from predators.
Parents are relying on your business to keep their kids safe. Safeguarding internet access is no different than removing dangerous physical hazards in the real world. Think about all the possible ways children may suffer harm online and create barriers to those risks.
Accessing Inappropriate Content
Another issue that businesses may face when allowing kids to access the internet is inappropriate content. There are ways of restricting the content that users can view according to age. However, in some cases, features built into search engines do not block problematic content.
Filters and age restrictions only work if the content is identified as fitting the requirement for the filters and restrictions. In some cases, content slipped through because it is disguised as innocent and age appropriate. This is an issue that parents often face at home when using applications to bar adult content.
More robust processes are needed to ensure that children cannot access inappropriate content. It is also important to have reliable features that monitor and track the pages that users view. Ideally, these features should flag access to inappropriate content to an IT administrator. Again, these processes are only as reliable as the capabilities of the software.
Remote IT Management
A more reliable way to protect your young users is employing the services of a remote IT management company. With dedicated network monitoring and management, access control, software maintenance and support, you can create a safe environment for kids to use the internet at your business.
An IT management company can provide tailored solutions to suit the needs of your business. The average business owner does not have the time or experience to create adequate protections for minors accessing the internet. By outsourcing your IT management, you have assurances that kids are not accessing spaces that could cause harm.
To learn more about IT management for businesses that serve kids, reach out to the team at ClubDrive today.