Potential Dangers on the Internet

The arrival of the Internet certainly changed the world in more ways than one. Prior to it becoming mainstream, people had to keep thick phone books and encyclopedias on hand for reference. Nowadays, all it takes to access the same amount of information found in the said books is a click of a button.

Unfortunately, the widespread popularity of the Internet is not without its dark side. While it became much easier for parents to assist their kids with homework, the development of some disturbing trends had also led to worry over how they might endanger a child’s well-being.

Some of the threats that children face as they troll the Internet often include the following:

  • Dangerous Predators. The Internet allows anyone to reach out to everyone else from virtually every part of the globe, whether they know each other or not. Also, the anonymity afforded by chat rooms and online messaging makes it difficult to ascertain whether the person you are chatting with is actually who they say they are. This sort of environment thus makes it easy for predators like pedophiles and sex offenders to lurk around online chat rooms and websites as they seek out their next victims. And since children can be quite gullible about strangers who seek to befriend them, they are particularly susceptible to this sort of threat.
  • Online Bullying. As stated in the previous item, the Internet affords its users a great deal of anonymity as well as a virtual shield from which they can say or write anything that comes to mind. As a result, some kids on the Internet end up using the said anonymity as a tool to bully others online. Some do it by spreading false and malicious rumors, posting embarrassing photos or videos of their target, or simply just bombarding their target with hateful messages.
  • Harmful websites. The pornography industry was among the foremost fields that really cashed in on the Internet trend. Prior to such, they mostly produced material traded or displayed in the backs of video rental stores. With the Internet in full force, however, pornographers have resorted to uploading their content all over the place. While hormonal teenagers often seek them out, guileless children can also lay eyes on them by accident since pop-up ads about porn sites can sometimes crop up in even the most harmless of web pages.
  • Virtual overdose. The Internet certainly offers up a lot of interesting and exciting content, so it can easily tempt a child or a teenager to spend more time online than they do in real life. Some children end up being too tired to study since they stay up surfing the Internet, while some neglect the development of their social skills since they spend most of their time behind a computer screen.

With all these threats all over the Internet, it would be advisable for parents to be vigilant about how their kids use their online connection. While an honest and open dialogue about the dangers of unrestricted Internet use could help, a more proactive solution would be to install a keylogger (parental control software) on your child’s gadgets so you can be informed if they were exposed to dangerous content or if they might be dealing with a potential predator.