The Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) has partnered with Google and Code IP to launch a Digital Parenting Programme to sensitize parents and guardians on the protection of children from inappropriate online content.
Internet threats such as phishing, cyber bulling, online shaming such as posting of private information have become rampant and the safety of children can no longer be taken lightly. Children are increasingly using the internet more with the shift to e-learning, e-entertainment and social media.
“This is part of our mandate to create awareness aimed at protecting our children from dirty content, especially now that they are at home for a long time.” KFCB Chief Executive Officer Ezekiel Mutua said with reference to the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said that through the programme, children would be able to use safe Google features to block and protect them from harmful content.
Mutua also said that they were working together with the Ministry of ICT to formulate better policies to regulate guidelines on sites such as YouTube.
“Online content is a major problem even in the developed world. The growth of the internet and penetration rate has made access to online content very easy,” said Mutua.
Earlier this year, the KFCB CEO launched a battle against immorality that targeted Public Service Vehicles who were exposing people and children to immoral content such as raunchy music videos.
“The moral fabric of our country is broken and we must act now to save our future generation. When you look at the kind of content some media houses air you wonder whether those in charge have children.” He said.
Below are a few ways you can protect your children
Advise them not to speak to strangers: There are many strangers online on gaming apps, social media, chat threads, inbox messages and so much more. Cyber criminals lurk behind legitimate accounts and user names and can easily contact your children. They then request for personal information, videos or images. Some use the platform to steal money so they will target personal information that can help them steal your identity in order to access the money. In most cases, children and elderly people are the most targeted for such. Advise your children by educating them and letting them know that people are not exactly who they say they are online and they should never share sensitive information even with people they know.
Block and Report Online Bullies: Advise your children to alert you in case some messages or actions from other online users are making them uncomfortable. You as the parent can then block and report such accounts. Ensure that your children do not stick around in such forums for more abuse.
Inform your children that some links, downloads and websites can infect your devices. Let them know that not each link even from seemingly trusted messages are safe.
Children are most vulnerable online and parents and guardians need to know how to protect them from the various threats lurking on the web. By understanding the risks and hazards that children are exposed to, parents can better equip themselves on how to handle the various situations