Web Surfing is becoming your kids’ #1 daily activity. Is your Home Computer Kid Safe? Parenting has never been an easy task. Now add in Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and so many other social media venues, and the difficulties and security risks increase exponentially. Many parents, however, are not monitoring their children’s internet activities and are unaware of the dangers that are lurking. Here are some tips every parent and child should know about computer safety. Teach your children well! Kids should be using computers in common areas of your home, create a computer desk in the kitchen or recreation room. Be wary of computers in your kid’s rooms with no surf controls and monitoring. You need to know where your kids are going on line. Remember that many smart phones are very powerful, similar practices should apply! Use security software that includes automatic virus scanners and firewalls. Complete packages are available from companies like Kaspersky, Symantec , etc., that contain complete packages of protection including parental controls. Keep your software and operating system up to date. This includes the free updates provided by Windows and other providers. The latest version of an internet browser will contain the latest protection against Hackers and Malware. Software is updated for a reason! “If in doubt…throw it out” applies to emails and especially attachments and links from strangers. If you get a message from a contact with no subject line, or suspicious language you should send your friend an email or call to inquire if the message is legitimate. They may have been hacked. It is much easier to confirm the contents of an email before opening, than trying to rid a computer of a virus…or worse. Computers are reliable but not infallible. Potent Malware can render a new computer useless and erase or compromise years of data in minutes. Make sure you make copies and do regular backups of important data. The internet is a great source of information. It is also the home of brilliant hackers and con artists and more. Don’t believe everything you read on line, and the old adage applies: “If it sounds too good to be true…it probably is!” Safe surfing everyone!