Kim Komando: The Danger of Your Child’s Blog

Kim Komando, one of my favorite radio personalities, wants to warn parents everywhere about the threats to children who blog. Many parents would be shocked to find what kind of information their kids are posting on the Web, including personal information that would allow a molester or other criminal to exploit them. She urges parents to monitor what their kids are doing, and take steps to protect them (including have them stop their blogging). If your child has to blog, make sure that they understand the dangers and what kind of information not to share, and make sure that you monitor the blog regularly.

I would also suggest that you make sure your kids know how strangers can trick them with information they might glean from a blog or other sources. For example, someone tracking a teenage girl’s blog could pick up enough information to approach her at a sports event and say something like this:

Jeannie, I’m Dave from your Dad’s work at Hudson, Inc. He’s at the hospital with your mom, Debbie, and your brother Joey, who was just hit by a car. He asked me to come here and give you a ride to the hospital as soon as possible because Joey may die. In case you’re worried, your Dad told me to prove I’m for real by telling you this: the name of your pet gecko is Lulu. OK, let’s go.

Would your child be smart enough to say no and take steps to verify the claim?

A great tip is to make sure that your kids know a secret password that they must demand of any stranger to prove they really have been sent by you. If the stranger doesn’t give the password, the kids should just run.


Author: Jeff Lindsay

4 thoughts on “Kim Komando: The Danger of Your Child’s Blog

  1. Kids blogging, how amazing is that! I believe that commenting on boards and blogs over the years has helped improve my writing quite a bit. I would love it for my kids. With so many reading what you’re saying, it makes you think twice about how you say it…hehe.

    It’s too bad that the risks you mention also exist. It’s the one real downside to the information age, you’re not the only one who knows how to google…lol.

    My parents had us all memorize a family password, and I used it twice that I remember. So that should be on your family’s “10 essentials” list if you have kids.

    Mentioning kids, learn how to monitor logs and history on your router if you have one. My kids are too young, but at BYU I had a roommate who was into some real heavy porn. We would have never known had we not known how to monitor that sort of thing.

    You can imagine how much fun that conversation was…lol.

    For those outside the corridor, Netgear has a filtering service that can work anywhere as long as you use their router. We paid $60, I think for two years service. That’s in addition to the cost of the router itself of course, which I think was still less than $100. The filtering was just as good as Websense IMO.

  2. Despite Jeff’s negative experience with the ContentProtect Internet Filter, I use it on a regular basis and find it very useful to keep track of my family’s internet activity. Sorry to turn this into an advertisement, but this software works great for my needs, and I think all should give it a try, because if you want peace-of-mind in knowing what your kids are doing, this lets you see what specific URL’s they are going to without having to go through a router to do it, plus it has AWESOME filtering capabilities.

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