Online Safety For Parents: Is There Cause For Concern?

Security and privacy have been at the forefront of every family’s mind for centuries, but a new obstacle has arisen with the dawn of the digital age. Studies by Statista found that 91% of 15 to 16-year-olds use social media. A main question arising from the multitude of connective platforms is, how will children be kept safe from the dangers of the digital world? This concern highlights the importance of online safety for parents, who need to be vigilant and informed to protect their children effectively.

The list of problems the digital world creates for young families is extensive, with cyberbullying being a growing concern. One problem that is often overlooked, however, is the handling of data for people under the age of 18.

Parents looking for online safety

Families Reliant on Technology for Education

Families are beginning to feel privacy concerns; news recently emerged regarding the handling of data of those under 18 by large tech companies. Multiple news sources have reported that NOYB has filed two complaints to the Austrian privacy watchdog regarding Microsoft’s education products.

NOYB, a non-profit company based in Austria, states that Microsoft’s 365 Education Services violate children’s data protection rights. On the other hand, Microsoft asserts that the schools have control of this data.

The second complaint claims that Microsoft installed cookies on devices using Microsoft’s 365 education. NOYB’s lawyer claims hundreds of thousands of pupils are likely to be affected by this accusation.

Why Collect User Data?

Large companies like Microsoft, Google, and TikTok collect data on interactions that users have on their platforms. These companies then use this information to build extensive profiles of users’ habits, preferences, and purchases.

There are many benefits to a platform collecting user data, such as improving performance issues and the user interface. Many users are happy for companies to collect information for such purposes.

The Downsides of Collecting Data

A commonly discussed downside of data collection is platforms optimising the data for intrusive ads, as well as concerns about data storage, with data breaches leading to rises in identity theft and various forms of fraud.

While the main purpose of collecting data about children is uncertain, previous distrust between tech companies and users suggests that families would not be fond of any data being collected, especially data from current activity which may affect future careers or habits.

A Tool to Boost Online Safety for Parents and children

Preventing unwanted tracking and scams can sometimes be overwhelming, but some apps like BLOKK can help stop tracking and keep you safe online. Some people see our app and similar tools as necessities, especially in an age where it is becoming increasingly difficult to protect your data.

We created the BLOKK app to help keep users safe online, simply running in the background of the device while you continue your everyday online activity as normal.

BLOKK is not a virtual private network (VPN), but it works by using a VPN connection on your device to block trackers and scams. This allows BLOKK to filter over 420,000 tracking and scam domains, providing you with privacy and app tracking protection right from your phone.

BLOKK app working with its new privacy score feature

Our team works hard to optimise user experience, with an easy-to-navigate interface for those who may not have as much experience with technology but are still concerned about their digital safety. A list of tracking and scam domains can mean nothing to some, which is why we introduced a privacy score, to sum up how safe you are online.

Consumer customisation is also at the forefront of what we do, with our users being able to block and unblock specific domains at their request.

In an ever-evolving digital world, families should have peace of mind that they can browse online without the risk of clicking a harmful link or having unwanted companies tracking their activity.

BLOKK is an excellent tool to maintain online safety parents and children; however, education is an extremely valuable tool as well, with the internet providing lots of resources. Scams are evolving constantly, so it can be difficult to find an effective way to stop them at first. Companies are also constantly developing new methods, making it essential for users to stay informed and vigilant.

The BLOKK app is free to download through our home page, where you will be taken to your devices default app store.