Blog topic: Protect Kids Online

Celebrating the 10th Anniversary of National Cyber Security Awareness Month

When the White House proclaimed October 2004 to be National Cyber Security Awareness Month, the Internet looked very different than it does today. Smartphones and social networks are just two of the dramatic changes of the last decade. Americans are communicating more frequently, with more people, and sharing more personal information than ever.

National Cyber Security Awareness Month

Hispanic Heritage Month: Protecting Your Family Online

According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project, almost 9 out of 10 Latino teens have access to the internet. And with tablets and smartphones, they could be online away from your home and your watchful eyes—even the ones in the back of your head. As a parent, there’s a lot you can do to protect your kids online. And you don’t have to be tech savvy to do it. Research shows that the best way to protect your kids online is to talk to them. So where can you start? This video helps you talk to your kids about being safe online.

Heads Up!

Here’s a heads up: we’ve updated our kids’ guide on online safety, and we’re giving away copies… for free! We encourage you to order as many as you’d like. And here’s an idea: share the Heads Up publication with the kids in your life during National Cyber Security Awareness Month coming up in October.

Heads Up Guide

Back to School Smarts

With your kids heading back to school, you might be hoping they spend more time with their noses in a textbook than with their eyes glued to a screen. And since you know they’ll be spending time online — socializing, sharing photos, and downloading apps — take the opportunity to talk about being tech smart as well as book smart!

Net Cetera: Chatting With Kids About Being Online

Got Kids Under 13?

It’s summertime. For kids, that might mean days at the pool, sleep-away camp, summer school…and hours on some computer or mobile device, if they can possibly get away with it.

Starting today, parents might feel a little better about their younger kids’ privacy online. That’s because changes to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) rule take effect today. The act requires operators of websites or online services directed to kids under 13 to give notice to parents — and get their verifiable consent — before collecting, using, or disclosing a kid’s personal information. The rule also applies to general audience sites that know they’re collecting information from kids under 13, and to sites and online services that have actual knowledge they’re collecting information from sites directed to children. The rule applies to apps, too, not just to websites.

Summer Camp Season

Aah, summer break. School’s almost out, and camp season is just around the corner. Whether your kids are attending a program for sports, arts, or education, there’s plenty of fun to be had this summer…and plenty of forms to be filled out.

Summer program forms may require you to provide your child’s personal information — like their Social Security number. While this may seem routine, it’s important to do what you can to protect sensitive information from falling into the wrong hands.

Annual Highlights

Springtime: For us here at FTC headquarters, it means warm weather, cherry blossoms on the National Mall, and the publication of the agency’s Annual Highlights.

.FTC Annual Highlights

If They’re App-y and You Know It

Have kids in your life? Then you’ve probably got a collection of kids’ apps — or soon will. Whether it’s a game on your phone or a math app on your tablet, find out what apps might be doing — but might not be telling you — and what you can do about it:

New Research: Teens and Technology

I don’t know about you, but I got my first cell phone when I was well past junior high. Fast forward to the year 2013, where 78% of teens ages 12-17 now have a cell phone, and almost half of those teens own smartphones.

These stats are hot off the press from Pew Internet and American Life Project’s new study, “Teens and Technology 2013.” The research takes a closer look at smartphone adoption and mobile access to the internet among American teens, with some eye-opening results.

Sentencing Commission Report Examines Child Pornography Cases

The United States Sentencing Commission recently submitted to Congress its comprehensive report examining federal sentencing policy in child pornography cases.

Although still only a small percentage of the overall federal caseload, child pornography prosecutions have grown significantly during the past decade and now account for nearly 2,000 federal cases each year. That growth reflects the increasing role of the Internet in child pornography offenses. Before the Internet, law enforcement officers had significantly curtailed the child pornography market in the United States.

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