Smartphone Safety Tips

In-App Purchases

If your child’s device is using a Play Store or App Store account with your payment credentials, you might want to monitor it for in-app purchases.  Many apps have the option to purchase in-app items using the payment information that is stored on the account or the device.

The easiest way to avoid accidental in-app purchases is to delete any payment information on the device and account.  If this option doesn’t work for you, you can also customize the in-app purchases from the device settings to enable password protected purchasing.  With this feature enabled, a passcode will need to be entered in order to proceed with the payment.  If you don’t have any billing information associated to your account, you don’t have to worry about this. 

If your child has their own device, the best option is to create a separate account for them that you can access. 

Changing Passwords

The security of your teen’s account depends heavily on the strength of the password on their account.  If you feel that the password associated to the account has been leaked, or if you and your teen simply want a stronger password, it is a good idea to change the password.  In fact, it is recommended that passwords be changed every couple of months.

To change the password on your teen’s account select Settings, click Account Settings, then Change Password

Creating a strong password can be tricky. Here are some basic tips for creating a strong password:

  • Don't make it obvious personal information
  • Make it long – minimum 8 characters
  • Use a combination of numbers, symbols, and uppercase and lowercase letters
  • Make it random, avoiding common phrases
  • Never reuse a password

Personal Information

It is important to be careful of what you say online.  Certain topics of conversation should never take place online, regardless of how familiar you are with the person.  Personal information, such as date of birth, Social Insurance Number, passwords, and banking information should never be discussed because you don’t know who else may have access to the information you are sending.

Talking to Strangers

While talking to new people can be exciting, it is important to remember to proceed with caution.  A casual conversation may seem harmless, but sometimes the stranger may have another motive.  It is best to steer clear of conversations that involve personal information, such as where you will be at a specific time, who your friends and family are, or where you live.

While not all strangers are a threat, parents should still discuss stranger safety with their children. With your help, you child should be confident handling different encounters with strangers.

Downloading Content

While you must be cautious of what you send out, screening the messages you receive are just as important.  If you receive anything that makes you or your teen uncomfortable, it should be dealt with right away.  This could mean informing the sender that you are uncomfortable or simply blocking them.  More importantly, you must exercise caution when opening or downloading attachments from others, especially if the sender is an unfamiliar contact.  A good practice is to only open attachments from trustworthy contacts.

Wi-Fi Connections

Wi-Fi has become more accessible in public locations.  While it is fine to connect to free Wi-Fi from different companies, we still need to be careful.  Public Wi-Fi is accessible by anyone, meaning the use of personal apps, such as personal banking, may not be the best idea. More importantly, staying clear from unknown Wi-Fi is also important because you don’t know if the network is secured.

Was this article helpful?
0 out of 0 found this helpful
Have more questions? Submit a request