How to protect kids on Google Android devices from Cyber Threats

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Children worldwide are increasingly drawn to mobile phones and tablets, largely due to captivating games and applications that not only engage them but also provide a sense of meaning from their unique perspectives. While it’s a reality that we can’t entirely distance them from digital devices, it is possible to shield them from cyber threats, such as viruses and espionage, through the use of apps, settings, and specific tools.

In light of this, here is information to empower parents in safeguarding their children against online threats prevalent in the current cyber landscape:

Google Family Link:

Google has introduced a parental control application called ‘Family Link,’ designed to limit a child’s screen time and is now a default app on numerous Android tablets. Alphabet Inc, the parent company of Google, assures users that data stored on its servers regarding children will never be sold, and children will not be targeted with related ads.

Child Security:

To enhance online security for children, Google provides account controls, allowing parents to set up two-factor authentication for added protection. Additionally, it enables device encryption with a passcode, a feature available for devices running on Android 9 and earlier versions.

Safety Aspect:

All Android devices now come equipped with a Safety Check feature. This feature allows children to contact emergency contacts if they feel unsafe, automatically sharing their location with designated emergency contacts such as 911, parents, or guardians. This safety measure remains active for a maximum of 24 hours. Furthermore, if the child has an AirTag (Apple iPhone) tracking them, the device will recognize this as a potential threat and notify emergency contacts, provided Bluetooth is activated on the child’s device.

For those less tech-savvy, accessing parental controls is simple. Head to the Google Play Store, sign in with your Google email ID, navigate to the top right corner or the profile picture icon, proceed to settings, and find the parental controls tab. Enable it, and much of the work in protecting your child from online threats is managed by the search giant, Google.

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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