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Thanks for stopping by our Safe-Surfing section for parents! We would like to discuss a very important subject: young web surfers unattended by parents.

As the internet has progressed, parents have released more and more freedom to their children with little or no involvement with them. This is a dangerous practice and one that we should examine closely. I have discovered that some parents view the computer as nothing more than a TV! And on top of that, they have never had "the talk" about safe surfing.

When you let them go down the road, you warn them to "be careful" and you ask "where are you going" and "when will you be back?" That is what must be done when they go online. They are connected to the entire WORLD! They can visit in destination or talk with ANYBODY they wish - the world is the palm of their hands. And as they have fun and surf, they are being watched by devious adults wanting to learn all they can about them, befriend them, and cause them harm. We must wake up and take back the web from these bad people. There are many wonderful things about the web, and these should be shared and enjoyed. Children need us to point out the dangers in the neighborhood and when they are online, their neighborhood is the world!

Children should be able to experience the learning capabilities the internet affords, along with acceptable games (age appropriate) and not too much more. Check out the ESRB's game ratings.

Internet Dangers for young surfers



Amongst the fun and games there will still be dangers parents must look out for. Many computer & game consoles (X-Box, PS3) offer the ability to chat or text while playing, and with this tool, an unsuspecting child playing the game may have a direct connect with a devious adult. The internet is almost too dangerous for advanced adult surfers, much less a young child. Teach your children about computer safety. 

You should also become familiar with the ESRB's game ratings. The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) is a non-profit, self-regulatory body established in 1994 by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA). ESRB independently assigns computer and video game content ratings, enforces industry-adopted advertising guidelines and helps ensure responsible online privacy practices for the interactive entertainment software industry.   

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Instant Messaging

These sneaky little programs load when you go online and alerts the world that you/your child has logged on! This is a helpful tool for office workers and family, but a BAD idea when it comes to young surfers. They should be hidden from the world wide web, not shouting to the world "here I am" and therefore, these programs should be blocked.

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Lately, blogs have received some press talk for the concerns we talk about today. These are like websites, but are designed for the teenagers to set up and use. No experience necessary to create and post content, and these do not require the consent of adults to use. Many young surfers only visit blogs - to the tune of 6-8 hours a day!

And the big difference between blogs and websites are the lack of responsibility of the site owner. As a web developer, I have certain legal laws I must adhere too (along with the moral laws I follow on my own). Blogs have no such things, all things are well and good in blog world. Young surfers are posting nude photos of themselves and of their siblings! They are posting your home address and where you work and where they go to school. They pour out their feelings and vent when they're mad. They promote and share lifestyles, such as drugs of choice and music and locations of parties (some x-rated) and all the while, no one checks up on this stuff.    

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Chat Rooms

Another place visited by young surfers. Here they can type anything they wish and it appears instantly on the online for the world to see. All the same dangers of the blogs - but live. And most of the posting are written in short hand which is very difficult to read. We have a webpage exposing some of widely used abbreviations. Please check out Type -n- Talk for more information.  

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A little known fact about email is how pervasive it is in exposing young surfers to x-rated websites. As adults, we hate Spam. It takes up valuable time and network resources and it spreads viruses and malware at an alarming rate. But when I young surfer opens Spam, they see a new place to visit. And email names give up a lot of personal information. Young surfers often uses a additional account of the Internet Service Provider (MSN, AOL, EarthLink). And they will use names like sally1988 or billy_age11. Never let your young surfer use their real name as their email. One tool we offer to help with this is MicaMail. A free "proxy" email account, with our domain name. And then you can forward MicaMail to a ISP provided mail account, if you prefer. Young surfers can get email accounts from unethical websites without you ever knowing, which in turn, will receive x-rated spam with photos and links. A very serious problem to say the least!

Please visit our Internet Law page for ways to report and shut down the bad practices being used against us and our families. You can even receive payment for turning over these abuses to the government. We have all of the information you need to take control of this serious problem.

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Free Websites

There are places online that let ANYBODY create their own website. A user can set up and publish a site in a few minutes and it will be placed online all over the world. These hosting sites offer these services so they can gain traffic for banner ads that they will place at the top of the webpage. And just as blogs, there is no limit as to what they post online. Myspace is one such place that makes it into the news alot, but there are plenty of others.

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Search Engines

Search Engines provide a invaluable service in presenting the contents of the world wide web in a way we all can make sense of. And if all web developers were responsible, search engines would be safe for young surfers. But today, websites are not rated nor checked for x-rated content in the search results. And then there are websites designed to catch your child by way of misspelled domains. This technique is called web spoofing. The bad guys will set up a x-rated or virus infected website under "pupys" so when your child looks for "puppies," they will find the bad site and click on it. Within the first few seconds, viruses and malware have been installed on your machine and the bad guys can track where your child surfs to. This way they can "get to know them a little" and decide how they will trick them into something. Machines need to be locked down and all young surfers must use child friendly search engines that all major search engines offer. You must pay attention to where they are getting their information from. Unlike adult book stores and bars that check age before allowing entry, this is not the case online. We have a few kid safe search engines listed on our DiscoverSearch page.   

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We can change the way we use the internet, and with this change, we will "remove the many opportunities" we are giving the bad guys. Malware is the #1 threat to your computer, so you can no ignore this insidious agent running wild on your system. Remove the malware, perform maintenance regularly, and keep security at the forefront! For the complete Lockdown Studies, please visit our Lockdown page.



One way you can allow your child to have access to the computer, but not the internet, is by using a firewall program. Security software is very critical in today's web world and a strong firewall can not be overlooked. By securing your machine, you can save you and your family from becoming victims, while maintaining the innocence of your child.

We recommend the use of a Security Suite product that includes all of the necessary security tools needed in today's web environment. Security Suites are packages that have four or five separate programs (virus scanner, firewall, privacy program, spam and pop up controls and more) wrapped into one main program for you to manage.  This is the type of protection that should be standard equipment on ALL MACHINES. This is what is required to safely and completely Lockdown your machine.

One of the most trusted security suite programs on the market today is McAfee Internet Security Suite 2006. It can track every site your machine visits, capture emails, block spam and viruses and allow or block access to the internet. It will not allow a "Limited" user account (mentioned below) from changing or erasing data. You can even allow them to access the internet for a set time, say Thursday from 5pm - 5:45pm ONLY! Once you have it set up, you can check the logs weekly to verify how your machine is being used online. You decide what program can be accessed and who can connect to the different services offered to online surfers.

Please visit our Product Testing page for more information on the McAfee program. And for resources on the best products to purchase, visit our MightMica Awards page for the "Top 5" in hardware & software. These are unbiased reviews of the major companies offering computer products to us consumers. We do not interact with them on any level and we test products in the real world, from the same resources that you would.

No special treatment or unfair opinions - just straight talk about the best of the best! 



By using Windows XP, you can allow many users to have access to your machine while not taking "control" of it. Set an account up as the "Administrator" and give all other users in your family (including your spouse) a "Limited" account. Set up passwords for each of the accounts and block the file sharing on the administrator account.

Now, you can always view ALL of the files on your machine, but no one can access/change the system files and folders required to operate your machine properly. This is first layer of protection for your Microsoft® Windows XP operating system and will keep your machine running smoothly.

Once you have set up passwords for each of the accounts - keep the administrator account private from everyone but your spouse. Instruct them to never go online or change/delete anything on the administrator side unless you are present. Let them know how easy it is to destroy the computer on the administrator's side - unlike the limited accounts. Windows XP added this feature for security, but many home users do not use it.

For the best in security, use McAfee and Microsoft to keep your family safe from the online dangers of today's internet. If you are having trouble setting up security on your Windows XP machine, just use our Contact Us form and we will be glad to offer help. We are here to help you secure your machine, while providing answers about the safe operation of your Windows XP machine.