Internet Safety for Kids - Episode 1 - Updates, patches and parenting controls

Internet Safety for Kids – Episode 1 – Updates, patches and parenting controls

Hi, welcome to Internet Safety for Kids and thank you for joining our program!

As always with our program Internet Safety for Kids, please make sure to watch this episode together when possible, so you all learn and understand these important topics. Don’t allow the adults to say that they already know everything because there will be plenty to learn for them, too!

Today we will have a close look at updates and patches, parental controls, and how that all connects to enable kids to enjoy the internet responsibly.

We will explain why is it important, what does it mean, and what should you do. Are you with us?

Let us start with explaining updates and patches. In short, these are improvements of software like for example the apps you use on your devices but also the operating systems of these devices. They can give you new features and functions, or new filters and sounds for your favorite app. That is all great, but there is something much more important about those updates and patches.

The patches will also give you security improvements and these are the most important thing for us. Hackers and cybercriminals are always on the lookout for things they can use to get access to devices, accounts, and more. The companies and people that make those devices are constantly trying to solve those issues and they put the solutions in updates and patches. So, every time you get such an update, you have successfully made it much harder for hackers and cybercriminals to access your device. Well done!

On the other hand, when you do not install those updates and patches, you make it much easier for those hackers and cybercriminals. And it is not just about hacking your devices and accounts. They can use your devices and accounts to harm other people. Oh no! We do not want that, do we?

What should you do? First things first. When you have a lot of apps, you also have to take care of a lot of updates. And all those apps use memory. So, you should start with having a look at the apps you are no longer using. This cleans up a lot of memory on your devices, and it will make updating a lot faster and easier.

Next, check if automatic updating is switched on. By using automatic updating, you will automatically get all the needed updates and you do not have to check that all the time. Also make sure that every time when you get a notification that a new version for your device is available, you install it as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the longer it will take until you get those important updates.

On most mobile devices it is quite easy to activate those automatic updates from the settings. On computers it can be a bit more complicated, and you will have to check the settings of all apps and programs, and make sure that automatic updates for the operating system are activated. Once done, you will get those important updates and please make sure you do not wait with installing them.

What should you do when there are no more updates? For older devices, operating systems, and apps, the suppliers stop making updates and that means you also no longer get the important security improvements. The smart thing to do is to stop using them. It is better to look for an affordable alternative than to keep using an old device or app, and take the risk that hackers and cybercriminals get their hands on it to harm you and others.

Some software and apps can get expensive when you have to replace it. We recommend to have a look at our friends OlderGeeks.com when you need free software.

An important message for the adults, let us put them to work. Besides checking mobile devices and computers for updates, it is also important to check for updates for all other connected devices. For example, the Wi-Fi router. That smart TV. The printer that can print over the network. Every device that is connected to Wi-Fi or network must be checked for updates.

Now that we have covered updates and patches and why that is so important, let us go to our next topic. Parenting control.

On most devices, you can activate parenting control. This means for example, that a parent or other adult will have to give permission before a new app is installed or a change is made to the settings of a device. Maybe you are thinking that this is not a good idea, but please hear me out on this one.

What we want to do with parenting control is to make sure that kids and parents both understand what apps you are using, and to prevent that you might install apps which are not for your age group. It will also help you to make sure that you do not install apps that are not secure. And the best part, you will have something to talk about when you want to install a new app.

Start by explaining why you want to use this app. For example, this app will help me do my homework, or this app was recommended by my teacher. But there are of course also very cool games you want to use, and you can show the games you are interested in. Most games have age groups, for example 12 and older, or even 18 and older. So, let us say that you are 10 and want to play a game that is meant for 18 years and older? That game might show you things that are not good for you. Parenting controls will help you to prevent such things, and it also helps you to make sure that your parents or other adults are aware of what you use and do.

Smart tip from the kids in our team: challenge the adults to play your favorite game with you once you have installed it.

The most important thing about parenting controls is that it helps us to take care of each other on the internet. Protecting each other in our digital world is very important, and we all have to do our part.

  • We have explained Updates and Patches, and Parenting Controls.
  • Updates and Patches help us to protect ourselves against hackers and cybercriminals.
  • Parenting Controls help us to make sure that we are allowed to use the apps we use.
  • Together, updates, patches, and parenting controls help us to keep our devices secure.

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