TIP 38. INTERNET PROTECTION
I think that most people would agree that that there are tremendous benefits coming from our current surge in technologies and advances in science, but as with most new products there can also be a down side. Everybody thought that 'Thalidomide' was a wonderful new drug that would help woman to overcome some medical conditions, but the world ended up with a generation of severely birth defected children.
In the same way we need to realise that there may be some unknown down sides of our current technologies that will only become evident in the future. The internet has been a wonderful tool for many millions of people around the world, and without it you would not be reading this page. But it is commonly known now that the internet can also be a terrible trap for unsuspecting users, with many hidden dangers. Some of the most recent studies into the growing use of social media and online games upon a young developing brain are posing serious questions about the long term use of some areas available through the internet.
Having an unlimited supply of information readily available at your fingertips sounds fantastic, and as one who uses the internet daily I have found it a great tool. The down side of the internet is that there is instant access to information and images that we do not want our children to be subjected to. Guarding young minds from 'adult' content is vital if we are to protect their innocence.
It is also very possible to inadvertently access pornographic images while doing a web page search for innocent subjects. Often these 'accidents' have been strategically planned by those who distribute pornography to trap innocent victims in their web. Like a spiders web, pornography is far too easy to get into and not easy to get out of.
These days it is often a school requirement to access information on the internet, therefore it is vital that we as parents ensure that our children are protected from the down side of the World Wide web. Fortunately there are a number of things that we can do that can minimise the possibility of 'internet accidents' happening.
I would encourage you as a father not to allow your children access to the internet without one of the parents being present at all times, this is probably the safest way to safeguard your home from 'internet accidents'. Along the same line I would also encourage you not to allow internet access in the children's rooms, as a shut door can bring temptations even to young hearts and minds.
Another way to protect the family from 'internet accidents' is to place the online computer in a lounge or similar room where it can be easily seen by other members of the family. There are also programs that you can purchase that restrict the pages that can be viewed on the internet, by blocking access to inappropriate websites.
One of the evolving problems that are being identified on the internet is the culture of 'chat rooms'. On a chat room you can talk with other people over the internet through typing alone, and again although your children may have school friends contacting them legitimately on 'chat rooms', this can also be an opportunity for those who would pretend to be kids to lure children into dangerous situations.
As the father you are the head of the household, and your children look to you for protection. None of us as fathers would let a rapist or child molester into our homes or to have access to our kids, we would stand at the door and stop them anyway we could. The internet can be a sneaky back door access for those who would try to take advantage of our children, and we as fathers must stop them.
Dads' Call To Action:
Ensure that the family computer is set up in a place that is easily seen by other members of the family at all times. Oversight your children's internet access and use programs that protect them from dangerous and inappropriate content.
(Genesis 15 v 1)
After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, "Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward."