Is Facebook Safe for Kids?

As a parent myself and one that works on the Web, my kids are very attuned to being online. That being said, I do not give my triplet 13 year olds “Carte Blanche” when it comes to choosing chat rooms or applications that their friends are using. In fact I do not even permit chat room use.

For me, I also do not allow at this time any instant messaging applications. I find them a distraction for my kids with the constant exchange with others while they should be doing homework or class research. I do however allow my kids to have Facebook pages, but I have set them up for them.

As a parent it is very important that if you allow your child to be on Facebook, that you carefully review their security settings yourseld. I found one of my kids had the city revealed in her profile and another allowed too much personal information to be shared to people other than friends.

I do monitor my own kids Facebook pages. I have friended each of them and their status updates appear on my wall. I do intervene both on Facebook publicly when needed to make sure my own kids AND their friends know that I am watching. I do periodically review that their privacy settings have not changed and I do periodically review their full profile online.

Kids want to be on Facebook, but it is important that you as the parent make sure that the Facebook environment is safe for them first by reviewing all the profile privacy settings.

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Why Are You Letting Someone Destroy Your Web Presence?

Why would you ever let someone or some business destroy your web presence? You think that you never would right, but you may be doing so without really thinking that your are.

In one recent case one of our client’s web host had not properly secured their server. This could happen to you too. Just because your host has a high profile name does not mean that they are “taking care” of business. A web host may host 50 or more clients on one server. If they do not have strong intrusion and firewall systems in place, if one site gets hacked all sites on the shared server may be hacked.

If your website is hacked, has malware installed on it, or is being used as a zombie spam agent, you need to ask some very pointed questions to your web host. I do not advocate moving right away to a new web host unless proper security measures are not part of your existing web host’s protocol, but you definitely need to ask some “in your face” questions and get “real” answers.

I have personally found that if you are paying $10 or less a month for hosting, that typically you are not properly covered. Intrusion detection, system redundancies, and firewalls cost money, so does a security minded IT staff. You will typically not receive this type of service from many budget hosts.  Now, not all, GoDaddy has a pretty good package and they offer budget hosting, but I have run into some that are just “hack” magnets.

Once your web host and website have been compromised you can lose your organic placement, be blocked by browsers, and labeled as a site that “when visited can damage your computer” in the organic search results. For some clients, that do not check their website daily, they can be compromised for weeks before they find out that the reason they have no phone calls is that their website has been “marked as unsafe” on Google.com.

There is too much to risk when it comes to destroying consumer confidence in your business when your website is spewing out malware when links are clicked in your site. I prefer to protect the online reputation I have by making sure that I have the best web host possible, that the most recent technology is used in their infrastructure, and that they are located in the United States as am I. It is important to understand that when you shop for a web host there is much more to consider than the price per month.

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