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4 Tips to Protect your Teen on Facebook

A teen’s Facebook page is like a diary of her life and often it’s open to hackers and other unsavoury characters. Here’s how to help your child stay safe



 Forget full names

Instead of using his real name, your child can use a nickname or a first-middle combo to maintain privacy. It’s also a good idea in case he slips up and doesn’t want university admission officers or future employers seeing those online blunders.


Choose tricky passwords

Suggest using a long password (10 plus characters) and changing it every three to six months. Here’s a clever trick: combine the first letters of words in a sentence. (‘I was born in Johannesburg in 1996’ becomes IwbiJi1996.)


Restrict access

The privacy setting ‘friends of friends’ invites possibly hundreds of people to see kids’ information and photos. Choosing ‘friends only’ will limit viewing to people they’ve confirmed as pals.



Stick to the past

Discourage kids from broadcasting plans, which gives potential stalkers info on their whereabouts.



Tips for your teens and you:

  • Log out of your social-media accounts when you are done using them, especially on public computers.
  • Make sure you know who all your social-media contacts actually are.
  • Stay alert to new social-media malware attacks and learn how to prevent them.
  • Make sure your teens share their social-media login details with you.



By Marnie Soman



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