How to Keep Your Kids Safe While Playing Games Online

Internet gaming is the new wave for adults, teens and even children. It’s a great way to pass by the time, but if you’re not careful, your children could end up in some type of danger. The internet should never be taken lightly when it comes to safeguarding your children from potential threats. While playing these web-based games, they are connecting with other individuals, some of whom aren’t even children. You don’t want your children meeting these people in real life or giving them sensitive details about their life. In order to keep your children safe while they’re gaming online, you can use the following tips.

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Understanding the Different Gaming Models

There are various types of online games children can play. It’s good to know which games your kids are playing, so you can better safeguard them from internal and external threats. Here is a quick list of the different game types out there today:

•    Digital downloads: If your child has a console or computer, he can download games directly to the platform. These are downloaded from online marketplaces, some of which are full-feature titles, puzzles and word games.
•    Subscription: Then there are online games that require you to pay a monthly fee to play. These are cloud-based games that are streamed using the internet. Without the internet, the game can’t be played.
•    Social network games: If you allow your children to use social media sites like Facebook, then they may play the games on there. These normally have in-game items that can be bought with real money and you can share stats with others on your friends list.
•    Boxed games: These are purchased from the store, but many of them today have online co-op play capabilities. These are available for PC, handheld and console devices.

Keeping Your Children Safe While they Play

If your children are going to be playing games on the computer, make sure it is equipped with anti-virus, firewall and anti-spyware software. It’s also a good idea to keep the web browser updated.

As for the gaming accounts your children use, these should have strong passwords to prevent hackers from cracking them. Try to make the password a sentence that has 12 characters or more. You’re allowed to use spaces, so it should be simple for your child to remember and write. When selecting a username, make sure it doesn’t have your child’s real name, age, location, gender or other personal details.

Try to be around your children when they’re playing games. Keep an eye on what they’re doing and let them know they can come to you if something happens that makes them uncomfortable. You can even try joining in on the fun by playing with them.

If there are things happening online that bother them, empower them with tools so they can handle it themselves. For instance, teach them how to block or report a cyberbully. Most importantly, they should come to you whenever they are being harassed.

Every now and then, try to take your kid away from the games to enjoy the real world. Plan a trip somewhere like Biltmore.

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