The internet and access to online entertainment have become very prevalent in day to day life, especially for children. Children can often spend more time online interacting with friends than they do in real life. This can be a blessing and a curse to parents trying to create a balance between letting there kids be kids and keeping them safe. Here are 5 things parents can do to keep their kids safe online.
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Add your children and any other guardians to your account in the settings area.
2. CONNECT WITH YOUR FAMILY.
Once your added family members have installed MamaBear, they’ll simply need to log in using their phone number and the family password you created.
Share your password and give your kids a hand if they need help installing MamaBear on their phone.
You can resend the login link when you see that your child has not logged in for the first time or if their map location is old. Go to your child’s profile settings page and tap “resend login link.”
3. REVIEW YOUR CHILD’S DEVICE SETTINGS.
Your child’s smartphone needs data connectivity with these appropriate device settings:
– Location services “on”
– Background refresh “on” (for iPhones)
– Make sure wifi is “on.” Even if not connected, having wifi on helps the device’s location services.
– The device also needs to be powered on to share updated location information.
Connect your child’s Grom App, Instagram, Twitter, and/or Facebook accounts in the settings area of MamaBear.
Once you are connected:
– Customize a word list to monitor on all connected social accounts by tapping “restricted words.” Check out these acronyms you may want to add to the list.
– Notifications for new Twitter followers.
– Notifications for Instagram photos posted.
– Select what notifications you would like to see of your child’s activity on the Grom app.
5. SET UP SAFE PLACES.
Add places like home or school in the settings area of each child to receive notifications when they arrive or leave. Adjust the size of the boundary to fit the location in the safe place settings to prevent “bouncing” or inaccurate departures.
6. REVIEW THE DRIVING SPEED DEFAULT.
The default setting for driving speed notifications is 55 MPH. You’ll receive notifications if your child rides or drives over that limit once per hour.
7. SHARE THE GIFT OF FAMILY SAFETY.
Earn a free premium subscription when you share MamaBear with your friends using the Bear2Bear referral program. Tap the top left menu and tap “share” to choose among text, email or social apps to share your custom referral link. As soon as your friends register, they receive a free premium subscription period and so do you! Learn more about Bear2Bear.
8. LEARN MORE ABOUT DIGITAL PARENTING.
It’s that time of year when some families take a break from the everyday by traveling somewhere warm for a week of family down time and fun. For other families, spring break may mean mom and dad work while the kids stay home. Regardless of whether you’re hitting the beach or sitting behind your desk, spring break is a departure from the regular schedule, creating a need to stay connected.
We’ve compiled a few safety tips that will help put parents’ minds at ease when their children are exploring new places on a family vacation or just have some extra downtime on their hands when they’re out of school for spring break.
Spring Break Family Safety Tips
- Use Location Technology. Knowing where your children are using mobile location technology like MamaBear can allow you to loosen the boundaries when in new places, giving your kids an exciting sense of independence as they explore. Whether you’re at an amusement park, a beach resort or on a mountain, MamaBear can help you keep tabs on the family’s location. If you are at work and your kids are home alone, you can put your mind at ease knowing that if your kids roam the neighborhood with friends you can track their locations while at work.
- Practice Social Media Safety. Discuss as a family the potential risk involved when revealing too much about where you are vacationing and how long you’ll be gone. Oversharing on social media can leave your home vulnerable. No pictures of hotel room numbers, or other specific location indicators either. If your kids are home alone, they should not share this information either, as it makes them vulnerable to any predators who might be watching. Monitor what the family’s posting to ensure safety.
- Talk About Stranger Danger. We often feel comfortable in our day-to-day trusted community and social setting. As we step out of our comfort zone when on vacation, it is important to create a greater sense of awareness for who’s around and caution the children with limits of conversation with others physically and virtually.
- Drive and Ride with Caution. If the kids are driving or riding with others during spring break, it’s helpful to use a family safety app like MamaBear to be aware of how fast they’re going. Talk about the consequences associated with speeding and remind them of the importance of wearing seat belts and not drinking and driving or texting and driving.
- Have an Emergency Plan. Where will be the family’s meeting spot if connection is lost? Who are safe people to approach to ask for help? Quiz the family on the name and address of the hotel. Carry identification and health insurance information in case of injury.
You Might Also Like: Teenage Safety Tips on their First Independent Vacation
We hope you have an opportunity to use this great time of year with a break from school to connect with your family and create lifelong memories. Stay safe out there.
Choosing the right family safety app isn’t easy. We’d like to help you by comparing the features of the MamaBear app with a few other apps out there for Android and iPhone.
In our last comparison, we looked at Life 360. Now let’s check out the similarities and differences of MamaBear to Apple’s iPhone app Find My Friends.
Find My Friends is primarily a tracking app. With Find My Friends, users request connection to people they want to view location. Once a friend accepts the request and installs the app, a user can see their friend’s location and vice versa with the option to turn off location sharing.
MamaBear and Find My Friends share a few similarities.
- View current location of people
- Proactively send location. Find My Friends calls it “Notify Friend” and MamaBear calls it “check in.”
- Set arrival/departure alerts
There are also a few key differences.
Here’s a the breakdown:
- Who it’s targeting. MamaBear’s emphasis is on family safety, whereas Find My Friends is marketed in part as a social app for use by adults and their friends and companions.
- Location history. MamaBear offers a view of historical location points up to 7 days.
- Message feed. MamaBear presents all alerts and messages received for up to 7 days.
- Social media monitoring. MamaBear notifies parents when their child makes a new friend on Facebook, follows someone new on Instagram or uploads a photo, gets tagged or @mentioned, receives a message that includes inappropriate words, bullying language or any other restricted words the parent sets.
- Driving speed monitoring. MamaBear offers alerts when kids drive or ride over a preset speed limit including how fast and where.
- Optional location sharing. Find My Friends allows all user to turn off location sharing. Families using MamaBear can’t turn of child logged in location sharing from the app, though the parent’s location sharing is optional.
- Temporary sharing. Find my friends offers a group of invited friends to share location for a pre-set timeframe.
There are many great apps that offer a variety of fun and useful features! MamaBear strives to offer parents concerned about their children’s safety peace of mind and comfort.