Safe Kids

Many parents also worry that their kids' activities online could attract unwanted attention. Statistics from the FBI, for example, show that "in 1996, [the agency] investigated 113 online child pornography and sexual exploitation cases," says Angela Bell, a spokesperson for the FBI. "Last year it had more than 1500."

Even though that's a mind-bending 1200 per cent increase, your family isn't defenceless. Nor is the statistic a reason to panic. The Internet is still a great resource for your child's schoolwork research, keeping in touch with friends, and playing online games.

Through my own experience as a father of a 15-year-old girl - and with the help of academic researchers, child-advocacy experts, and other parents - I've gathered 22 ways to keep kids safe on the Net.

It's true that the Net has its bleak side, but it's not all necessarily risky. The Web is a great place for kids to learn, congregate, and entertain themselves.

You just have to educate your child about staying away from the dangerous parts.

Start smart

Keep younger kids safe

Tackle teen safety

Fight back

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Gregg Keizer

PC World

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