NOW READING: The Ethics of Password Sharing

The Ethics of Password Sharing

There are many concerns when it comes to privacy and password sharing.  There are questions we can ask, Is it a violation of trust asking your kids for their passwords? What’s okay and what’s not okay when it comes to sharing passwords with your kids?

When it comes to children, knowing their passwords for all social media accounts, email, gaming sites, computer, tablet, or phone should be shared between the two of you.  This will enable you and your child to be open for communication and to gain trust when it comes to technology.

Password sharing is one of those subjects people have strong opinions about.  When it comes to our kids and their online activity, certain steps should be taken in order to keep our kids safe.

Always keep an open line of communication when it comes to your child and internet safety, make sure that passwords are shared ONLY between parent and child.  Talk to your children about the dangers of sharing a password with their best friend.  Kids can be incredibly trusting when it comes to friends and sometimes those friends can let them down, hacking into their accounts and possibly posing as them causing online and IRL problems- which may result in bullying.

A password should be easy to remember but tough to hack.  Using a capital letter in a word mixed with numbers is a great way to keep the password secure.  For example, using a “4″ in place of an “A” a “1″ in place of an “L” or a “5″ in place of an “S” are easy ways to replace a letter for a number.  Never use “Password” as the password, or things like phone numbers or addresses.  Keep the password in a log book for your child to have access to, and try to change it every 6 months to a year, letting your child know the password has been changed.

Sharing passwords with your child on sites like Netflix or Hulu is a personal decision. Just remember that once a child knows the password to various sites such as these, they have full access to it until the password is changed.

Apple, Google Play, or the Kindle app stores will have their own passwords as well.  If you choose to share this password with your child be sure to remember that these accounts are linked to your credit/debit card information, which can make app purchases extremely easy.

Kids are incredibly tech savvy and seem to stay one step ahead of us parents.   Try to educate yourself with what your child does online.  Know how to search your browser history, know what apps are on your devices, and know all passwords.  When it comes to our kids, this knowledge is not a violation of privacy, but an act of good common sense parenting.

Via CyberWise

This article and infographic were featured on CyberWise on October 22 2014. The article was written by Brittany Oler.Critical Thinking Companion