Ten Common Mistakes Families Make Online
You are here:
Internet Family Fun Home > Internet Safety > Ten Common Mistakes Families Make Online
Is Your Family Making These Online Mistakes?
Families tend to get a computer and sign up for online without properly researching what the downfalls can be. Families can put themselves at risk for things like their credit card being used by others or even their own family members without the parent's consent, agreeing to terms by clicking a link, or even making other distant family members angry at them for sending unwanted email. Here are some common mistakes (not in order of importance) that families make that could harm your financial future, relationships with other family members or your computer.
1.) Not Using Proper Netiquette
Often when a family gets their first computer, it is to send emails to other family members. They send emails without checking what proper netiquette is and send emails that are too large or shout at their family members. Netiquette is the rules of common courtesy while using email. Most experienced users will ignore unacceptable behavior for quite awhile but eventually they will expect you to learn the rules. Learn all about Netiquette now.
2.) Letting Children Use The Internet Without Parental Supervision
Parents need to supervise their children while they are online for two reasons. One is that children are no match against Internet predators and they could easily be kidnapped by one of these deviants. And two, parents are responsible for their children while they are online. Children can get their parents in trouble very easily by going into chat rooms and acting unruly or breaking terms of service agreements with your ISP or Web sites. Find out what you are responsible for and how to keep your kids safe.
3.) Freely Disclosing Your Name and Location
If your children are freely disclosing their full name and address, you could end up with someone that you don't want on your doorstep. Here are some tips about how to keep that information private.
4.) Not Using A Firewall
When you connect to the Internet or a network, it allows other computers to read and alter your hard drive. Learn more about firewalls and install one today.
5.) Not Using Virus Protection
One of the most common mistakes is to not use virus protection software and keep it updated. New viruses come out almost daily and you could easily have one and not know it. Find out more about anti-virus programs and make it a priority to install and update it immediately.
6.) Abusing Email
Although this falls under netiquette, there are some specific email rules that you should be aware of. One of the things you should check before sending tons of jokes to someone, is to make sure they want them. Sending a few is fine but sometimes people get carried away and send way too many. Also, another thing to do is to make sure you don't give out other people's email address. When you forward an email, the email address that sent it to you is disclosed on the email. Take the time to remove it and make sure that when you send an email to several people use the bcc option so that their email address isn't disclosed to everyone. Protect your friend's email address as it were your own. Find out about email netiquette.
7.) Installing Spyware
Many programs that you download from Internet can contain spyware. Spyware are programs that transmit your surfing habits back to the source of the program. Advertisers use it to find out more about you. Although some people don't object to the use of spyware, it can slow down your computer to a crawl. Find out more about spyware and learn how to eliminate from your computer.
8.) Not Protecting Their Email Address From Spammers
9.) Transmitting Personal Information On A Unsecure Connection
Before you enter personal information such a your credit card number or social security number to be sent over the Internet, make sure that it is a secure encrypted connection. If it isn't a secure connection it can be read by anyone along the way, just like a postcard can be read by postal employees. This includes sending personal information to Web sites and by email. Learn more about secure connections.
10.) Not Keeping Their Personal Information Secure
It is imperative that you keep your passwords to yourself and not store personal information on your computer. Often people will save a text file with credit card information, user name and passwords and important financial information on their computer without having it encrypted with a good firewall to keep others from accessing it. Also, if your computer is used by family members, credit card information can be saved with the auto-complete feature on Internet Explorer. When a family members goes to a Website they can order things on your credit card if the credit card info is saved on auto-complete. Learn how to control the auto-complete feature on Internet Explorer.