Melita puts parents in control with eero Secure
Easter holidays liberate children from daily schedules and with free time, comes extra screen time, often leaving parents in a quandary on how their children can enjoy being online, without the risks.
A 2020 EU-wide study found that one in five Maltese children received requests of a sexual nature over the internet, and nearly half encountered something online that made them uncomfortable or scared.
With about half of the younger children aged between nine and 10 accessing the virtual world through a smartphone establishing boundaries becomes crucial for their overall well-being.
Parents in Malta are becoming savvier at protecting their brood — the EU Kids Online study put them at the forefront of using technological options to monitor their children’s online presence, with 33 per cent using software to filter content and monitor applications, and another 26 per cent using devices to track their children’s locations.
However, many more remain unaware of what their children are up to online and with over 175,000 children coming online every day worldwide, the need to strike a balance between using devices for educational and communication purposes and being vigilant becomes more important.
Melita Limited is often approached by parents and others concerned about children’s safety online, which is why in February it rolled out a new feature — eero Secure, which specifically adds a level of protection to secure all devices connected to the internet from cyber criminals and gives parents and guardians users over what their family members see online.
Simon Poljask, Senior Manager Fixed Services and TV Business at Melita Limited, explains that parents can use the eero App to control what content and what Apps their children can access.
“Through the eero App, parents can control their home WiFi environment and all the connected devices. You can even can set restrictions for designated devices based on age or content categories,” he says.
Poljask adds that the only way this safety filter can be breached is if the settings are adjusted, which is why it is always important to keep devices and passwords secure, especially from the nimble hands of the young digital natives.
He explains that StellarWiFi, which is powered by eero — an Amazon product — is a mesh WiFi solution that enables customers to control their WiFi environment for safer, worry-free, reliable internet usage.
“The initial feedback to the launch of eero Secure has been very positive, especially from families with young children who spend a lot of time online. It is helping parents to better control their kids’ online experience and consumption of social media,” Poljsak said.
The eero App, which can be easily downloaded on any iOS or Android smartphone, is part of Melita’s flagship product; the Flexi bundle. Two eero pods are included with the 1,000 Mbps internet bundle. The features of eero Secure cover content filtering so your children don’t get any nasty surprises; an advanced network security to protect against potential viruses, malware, phishing attacks and more; safe search for peace of mind; and internet backup.
- Exposure to inappropriate content: Children and youth may come across inappropriate content online, such as violent or sexual content, which can have a negative impact on their emotional and psychological well-being. Use content filtering and age profiles.
- Cyberbullying: Kids and youth are vulnerable to cyberbullying, which can cause emotional distress and harm their mental health. If you are worried, contact the Cyber Crime Unit on 2294 2231 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Online predators: Children are often targeted by online predators who may use social media or gaming sites to lure them into inappropriate conversations or situations. Make children aware of the risks and to be cautious of who they trust online.
- Online scams: Children and youth may be targeted by online scams, such as phishing emails or fake social media accounts, which can lead to financial losses or other forms of harm. Melita customers with Umbrella and eero Secure connecting to the internet at home will be protected from many scammers.
- Balance offline and online time: Children may spend excessive amounts of time online, which may have a negative impact on their social and emotional development. Set App time limits and schedule offline activities.