How to protect your child on their new laptop

How to protect your child on their new laptop

technology By Jan 03, 2024 No Comments

How to Protect Your Child on Their New Laptop

A laptop can be a great source of Education and entertainment for your child, particularly when the best laptops today are no less than a full-fledged work and/or gaming station. However, before you hand over a brand-new laptop to your child, make sure you’ve loaded it up with the necessary security solutions, including a VPN, an antivirus, and a password manager. Together, they will help you protect your child from bad actors trying to track their online activities, infect their device with malware, or rob their personal details to gain illegitimate access to their social media accounts.

If you’d also like to stay up-to-date with your child’s online habits and block/restrict their access to objectionable sites – plus know where they are and who they’re talking to, install a parental control app on their laptop.

However, given the sheer number of available options, you need expert help to zero in on the best ones. Tom’s Guide experts have compiled a list of the top three VPNs, antivirus software, password managers, and parental control Apps for all-round protection of your child’s new laptop.

The Best VPNs for Your Child’s Laptop

The best VPN services will protect your child from the dangers of the Internet by hiding their real IP address and encrypting their data so that none of their online activities can be traced back to them. Here are our top three recommendations:

  1. ExpressVPN: the best VPN – get 3 months free. It offers easy-to-use and feature-packed Apps across various clients, rock-solid security, and blazing speeds.
  2. NordVPN: the fastest VPN with built-in antivirus, ad-blocking, and a password manager. It is also the fastest VPN in our testing.
  3. Surfshark: the best budget VPN on the market offers premium Features at a pocket-friendly price.

First things first, you need to consider the security and privacy of the VPN. It must come with essentials like a kill switch and a strict no-logging policy, meaning it won’t track your child’s IP or keep records of your child’s online activities. Additionally, look at the server locations on offer. A higher number of servers would mean better speed, as the load per server will be less. Also, if the servers are concentrated in a particular location, your child might not be able to unblock geo-restricted content from Other regions.

Choosing the Right Antivirus Software

Your child’s laptop needs an antivirus to stay protected from malware, viruses, ransomware, and other cyber threats. Here are our top three recommendations:

  1. Norton: A force to reckon with when it comes to malware protection and browser security, offering identity theft protection, a password manager, a VPN, parental controls, and more.
  2. Bitdefender: Top-shelf when it comes to stopping both new and unknown malware, with lots of add-ons and minimal system resource consumption.
  3. McAfee: Ideal for big families, offering protection for multiple devices and comprehensive security Features.

When choosing an antivirus, consider the coverage for all-round protection, Features like dark web monitoring, identity theft protection, a VPN, and parental controls. Ensure that it’s able to detect almost every piece of malware and doesn’t flag many false positives. Compatibility with all of your child’s devices is also crucial. Our team of experts conduct regular and rigorous tests to ensure that we offer the best antivirus recommendations.

Why Your Child Needs a Password Manager

A password manager is a must-have for your child’s laptop and other devices if you want to securely store their passwords, credit card information, and other personal details while also giving them strong password generators, anti-phishing Features, and robust protection from identity theft.

  1. 1Password: the best password manager overall, offering easy-to-use Apps and browser extensions across various devices.
  2. Dashlane: not only super secure but also great for those new to password managers thanks to its intuitive and easy-to-use interfaces.
  3. Keeper: offers rock-solid security with solid, no-nonsense Apps and offline access convenience.

Almost every top password manager uses industry-grade encryption to safeguard your child’s data, and our experts stress-test as many as 30 password managers, evaluating every core aspect, including their Features, ease of use, and value for money. The app’s dashboard should be easy to understand and offer a quick snapshot of all the information you need.

Choosing the Right Parental Control App

The best parental control Apps will help you monitor your child’s time online, who they’re chatting with, and what they’re watching on the internet. Additionally, they can help you zero in on their actual physical location, thereby ensuring their safety in both the online and the offline world.

  1. Net Nanny: offers unmatched web-filtering technology with real-time content analysis and reliable geolocation, app blocking/restricting, and time management.
  2. Kaspersky Safe Kids: the best cheap parental control software, offering fully-featured apps across PC, iOS, and Android devices.
  3. Qustodio: will fit your bill if you want to log your child’s texts and calls, track their online activity, and manage other Apps.

Your child’s age is one of the most important factors when shopping for a parental control app. Additionally, take into consideration how easy it is to use the app and the ability to manage multiple children/devices from one account and block apps/websites/games that you may deem inappropriate for your child.

It’s a good idea to open up to your children and talk to them about how to be responsible and cautious while using the internet. As a parent, you should have a keen interest and knowledge of your child’s online habits, including the people they talk to, the content they watch, and how much time they’re spending online.

Source: tomsguide

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