Online video game safety for children is an ongoing process. And danger lurks behind every click of the mouse. But as an after-school treat, video games are great for kids to unwind.
Check Out the Server they Use
Online games are run on servers and are hosted. This means someone creates an instance of a game and allows others to connect to it. These can be public or private. And popular games that kids play, such as Minecraft and Roblox, use these. And there are servers that are bad for kids. However, there are also Minecraft Bedrock servers that are safe. Look for servers that highlight child policies, impose sanctions for violations, and whitelisted servers with vetting procedures.
Monitor Any Chat Software
Many gamers like to use chat software to communicate with their friends. And these can be text chats or voice chats. Internal text chats in online games are often monitored by the game’s developers for unsavory language or criminal behavior. However, external chat services, such as Discord, are not necessarily as safe as these. Anyone can set up a Discord server and use it in a private nature to avoid being noticed. So check in now and then with your kids, just in case.
Online Video Game Safety Means No Personal Info
If you have set up online classes, you probably know about the dangers of sharing personal information online. Personal data is big business these days, and criminals such as hackers love nothing more than selling your data. Additionally, personal information can be used to circulate among online predators. Sorry to say that, but it’s true. So make sure you don’t use anything that shows your child’s name, age, address, location, and where they go to school.
Adjust Any Privacy Settings
Making sure you try not to use personal information is all well and good. But sometimes, apps themselves can do it. Some apps require you to include certain data to sign up, and this also includes phone numbers. Additionally, some apps display personal data by default, as used to be the case with Facebook. So, always make sure you go into any apps your kids use and switch off personal data displays. This includes sending data to apps to improve performance.
Be Aware of In-App Purchases
Finally, for your own safety, be aware of in-app purchases. In-app purchases are things your kids can buy to add to their games. And some companies don’t warn you of this and have it turned on by default. So, if your kids have your credit card details, they can reuse them for in-game purchases. You can avoid this by setting up games and devices not to save card details. Or may end up with a huge bill like many parents of children using Apple devices.
Online video game safety isn’t as hard as you might think. It is an ongoing process, but a good start is to look for child-safe servers, not share personal info, and avoid in-app buying on cards.
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