MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) – The Better Business Bureau is warning parents and teachers to be vigilant as the new school year begins, especially when it comes to potential online scams.
For parents, the BBB had five tips.
- Look out for children creating website accounts without permission: The BBB says some children may falsely add a birthdate to an account to meet the minimum age requirement. The BBB said parents should be aware of what their child is doing online to avoid the risk of online strangers and advertisers.
- Beware contests and giveaways: The BBB warned parents to avoid giving banking or credit card information to children, as contests and giveaways can collect a large amount of that information on entry forms.
- Understand phishing: Even kids can get junk mail, the BBB says, which makes them susceptible to click on links that may be fraudulent websites.
- Understand apps: Certain apps may collect personal information or target a child with ads, the BBB notes. Parents and guardians should be aware that apps may cost them a large sum.
- File sharing sites: Some websites allow children to download free media, which could come with the risk of downloading a virus.
The BBB also had advice for teachers and administrators around these subjects:
- Videoconferencing tools: The BBB said teachers should ensure the online software they use is secure.
- Evaluate cybersecurity plans: Educators should create a plan for how they will notify students, faculty and staff of important information, should there be a data breach once classes are back.
- Update devices that connect to the internet: Teachers should back up any important lesson plans, personal information and class assignments in order to protect them from any online threats.
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