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Teaching Your Child About Scams

Updated: Mar 22, 2023

As soon as your child is old enough to use a search engine and type messages, it’s essential to teach them about many internet safety topics, including scams. Of course, it helps if you understand them first; there are many types of scams, and not all of them are as obvious as the infamous poorly-written emails from Nigerian princes. Some are designed to trick you out of money; others are after your personal information, which allows scammers to steal your identity. You can find some common recent scams here.


Here’s what you need to know—and teach your kids—about how to avoid being scammed online.


Tips for Helping Your Child Avoid Becoming a Scam Victim


You can protect your child and entire family from falling prey to a scam by taking these steps. Teach them to avoid the following:


  • Sharing sensitive information. Teach your child what kinds of information they should never share. This includes personal contact information, personal identifiable information (PII), passwords, bank account numbers, and account information for any of the devices or digital services they use.


  • Opening suspicious links or files. Explain that it’s possible for scammers to send messages that look like they’re from a legitimate company, friend, family member, or acquaintance. Show them how to identify phishing scams using different kinds of examples so they get an idea of what looks suspicious and are better able to anticipate phishing motives.


  • Using or engaging with fake websites and apps. Spotting fake websites and apps works much the same way as spotting fake designer merchandise. Teach them to spot details like misspellings and strange URLs as well as how to search for legitimate websites and apps for comparison using a search engine or app store. Tell them to consult you before making any in-app or in-game purchases or accepting any suspicious offers.


Teach Kids Safe Tech Use With Net Positive


The mission of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Utah County is to inspire and enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, caring, and responsible citizens and leaders. We accomplish this by providing evidence-based programs with a focus on those that improve academic engagement, build character, and that improve healthy behaviors.


Our Net Positive Program educates K-12 students about digital safety, health, citizenship, and leadership. After participating in our program, students are 97% better prepared to face internet dangers. Contact us to learn more and ask your school to schedule a Net Positive Presentation, or support us with your donation today!




References

Hebert, Amy, et al. “How to Recognize and Avoid Phishing Scams.” Consumer Advice, 22 Mar. 2022, https://consumer.ftc.gov/articles/how-recognize-and-avoid-phishing-scams.


“Help Your Children Avoid Internet Scams.html.” Scambusters, 18 Nov. 2020, https://scambusters.org/internet-scams.html.


Person. “Top Scams to Watch out for in 2022.” AARP, AARP, 11 July 2022, https://www.aarp.org/money/scams-fraud/info-2022/top-scams.html.


Teach Your Kids How to Avoid Online Scams | Teach Your Kids How to ... https://cba.ca/teach-your-kids-how-to-avoid-online-scams.


“What Are Some Common Types of Scams?” Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, https://www.consumerfinance.gov/ask-cfpb/what-are-some-common-types-of-scams-en-2092/.


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