Why do Teens Need Privacy Online?

by Jenn

In a recent study it was found that teens were not worried about oversharing private information. Only 31% of teens have feelings of “somewhat” concern about the amount of personal information posted on Social Media. To compound this, only 9% had any real worries about their personal information being online.

Why do Teens Need Privacy Online?Why do Teens Need Privacy Online?

The funny thing about privacy is that in today’s technology-driven society very few things are really private. Security cameras, banking records, Social Media, and the frequent use of GPS destroy all chances of anything remaining private. We are constantly being monitored in some form.

In the age of disappearing messages and strong passwords we believe our thoughts and images are secure. The last few months proved this point invalid. There have been a variety of high profile security breaches and hacks that left many people questioning if anything is really private anymore.

Staying Informed Without Spying

The numbers regarding how teens view online privacy can stir up feelings of fear in their parents. Cyberbullies, predators, sexting, and identity thieves are real threats lurking behind the touchpad. It might encourage parents to seek desperate measures to keep on top of a child’s digital activity.

Spying should be avoided as much as possible. This reactive response shuts down all communication and creates a hostile environment. Spying only promotes secrecy and has the potential to breakdown a relationship between parents and child.

Actively monitoring a teen is highly evolved and doesn’t rely on spying or sneaking around. This method involves open dialogue and encourages teen privacy. Open communication is the main way for parents to allow a teen independence and privacy without spying.

Promoting Privacy Without Compromising Family Values

One of the best ways for a teen to fine tune responsible skills is for a parent to slowly step back. This allows children to venture out in the world on their own by offering guidance at a distance. This, of course, can be terrifying for the parent.

Here is a compiled list of 8 suggestions to encourage a teen’s privacy without giving up on being involved in her life:

Acknowledge good choices. Let them know you noticed their actions and reinforce positive behaviors.

Connect with teens on Social Media. Keep in touch, play a quick game, or leave a message every now and then to interact with a medium he enjoys. Reinforce good Social Media etiquette.

Use devices in areas that are frequented by a variety of people. Avoid cell phones or computer devices in bedrooms or bathrooms.

Be aware of trends and risks that your teen is exposed too. Teens like to experiment and often encounter dangerous situations. Sexting, the choking game, and drugs are just a few topics that come to mind. It might make you feel old, but get down with the talk so you can decipher what a teen is messaging.

Make family time a priority. Stay connected during family meals, game nights, and special times set aside just for the family. Avoid lecturing and listen to your teenager. Keep the line of communication open to prevent sneaking around.

Allow chances for children to prove themselves. Offer responsibilities and allow them to suffer natural consequences if they fail.

Use an app to keep tabs on cell phones and Internet usage. Following all the sites and apps a teen uses can be very daunting and time-consuming. Be honest and inform your teen that you will be checking in on their accounts and messages. Use an app that allows easy access.

Limit the amount of data available. A recent study found that limiting data was the best deterrent to prevent sexting behaviors.

Teen Privacy

Teens need to understand that everything online has the potential to be made public. With proper guidance and monitoring, a lot of heartache can be avoided.

Hopefully, the biggest issue your teen will face is deciphering the main dish served by the lunch ladies.

teens privacy online and information infographic

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