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Internet Family Fun

Webcams and Kids

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Internet Family Fun Home > Internet Safety > Webcams and Kids

Webcam Safety for Your Child

Your child may be wanting a Webcam for their computer or maybe they already own one. Their friends may already own a Webcam so the pressure is on for your child to have one too. They can be a lot of fun to share instant video from computer to computer. They also can be very dangerous and they can lead to dangerous behavior. Here is what you need to know about Webcams so you can make a decision if your child should have a Webcam.

What a Webcam Is
Also called a Web cam, home cam or cam. A Webcam is a device that is a video camera that hooks into the computer, which connects to a web server that allows video or a succession of still images to be instantly transmitted to the server. The images or video is then accessible to other computers and can downloaded and appears almost instantly to the other user. Webcams are used for video conferencing.

The Dangers to Your Child Using a Webcam

  • Pedophiles can access the Webcam.
    A pedophile can access the server and enjoy looking at your child doing ordinary things. They can also hunt for your child's location fairly easily and abduct your child. Your child may even end up communicating directly with a pedophile and remember that these pedophiles threaten your child that they will tell you what they have been doing or threaten the child's family members in order to get them to do more.
  • Kids communicating with each other can get carried away and share too much information.
    Imagine a group of teens playing a game, such as poker, with each other. One thing leads to another and they end up playing strip poker. The kids feel fairly safe because it is just between friends, plus they feel safe because they are in their own homes. The video can be saved though or accessed by someone outside of their group. We don't want to think about our children doing such things but like it or not it happens.
  • Kids have been known to end up going into business selling images of sexual acts on these Webcams.

The Good Things About Webcams

  • Video conferencing with family members.
    Imagine your small child that only gets to see their grandmother once a year in person because you live so far apart. A year in the life of a small child is a long time and often the visit is over by the time the child warms up to the grandmother. Webcams can help this situation greatly. Not only does the grandmother get to see the child in action, the child gets used to "seeing" the grandmother often.
  • Being able to check in while you are away.
    Your at the office and you can see what is going on at the house and you can see what the child or nanny is doing in your home.

Ideas to Keep it Safe if You Want a Webcam for Your Child

  • Never allow a Webcam in your child's bedroom.
  • Only allow supervised use of the Webcam. Take it with you or lock it up if your child is home by himself.
  • Use monitoring software to monitor how your child uses the Webcam.

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