Keep your kids safe on the Internet with Truckee Library resources |

Keep your kids safe on the Internet with Truckee Library resources

Teri Andrews Rinne
Children's Services Librarian, Truckee Library

The last two weeks of columns focused on tweens and teens and their online adolescence, with an emphasis on the positives associated with online communication. But what about their younger brothers and sisters? Can the Internet be a safe place for kids of all ages?

Information technology security expert Simon Johnson left the corporate world to pursue more meaningful work shortly before the birth of his first child. He realized he was receiving an average of 500 inappropriate, spam e-mail messages a day. While fixing his spam problem, he realized he would hate to see his daughter encounter these messages. He searched for software, books, and reviews on the topic of protecting children online, but he found little useful, up-to-date information. He decided to use his corporate IT security skills to evaluate software products, start a Web site called and write “Keep Your Kids Safe on the Internet,” available through request at the Truckee Library.

Johnson argues that The Web is still a “wild, undiscovered, and unregulated frontier.” Kids can be targeted by pedophiles and stalkers, exposed to spam, pornography and other inappropriate material and tricked into downloading viruses and spyware. The good news is parents can take steps to protect their children so they may safely and effectively use the Internet, which Johnson presents ” in spite of the dangers ” as essential for contemporary learning. Most importantly, Johnson asserts, parents should educate their children (e.g., tell them not to give out personal information online), monitor computer use (place the computer in a shared place, not in a child’s bedroom) and buy computer software to filter and protect. He suggests five programs parents should install and walks readers through individual products, explaining the pros and cons and making recommendations. Rather than offering a diatribe on the dangers of the Web, Johnson offers a practical, well-researched guide to help parents minimize the Web’s potential drawbacks.

“Look Both Ways: Help Protect Your Family on the Internet” is another excellent title currently on order for the Truckee Library. Linda Criddle, a leading child safety expert offers a practical education about what is safe, what is not and how taking a few precautions can help your children avoid putting themselves at risk. Discover what the risks are today and common ways in which people inadvertently expose themselves and accidentally reveal information. She outlines 14 ways in which you can help make the Internet a safer place for you and your family.

Library Hours

Monday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Tuesday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Wednesday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Thursday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Friday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Tuesday Toddler Time at 10:30 a.m. (ages 2 to 3 years)

Babes in Bookland on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m. (ages 6 months to 2 years)

Storytelling with Mrs. Fix on Thursdays at 11:15 a.m. (ages 3 years and up)

Spanish Storytime on Fridays at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. (ages 2 and up)

Bookshelf’s Dry Camp Book Club at the Library

Meets monthly at the Library. Participants at the book group meeting will receive a coupon for 15 percent off a one-time book purchase at the Bookshelf at Hooligan Rocks. Everyone is welcome. –

Now on display at the library:

Portraits by Truckee artist Raphael Jolly

Above the Fireplace: Sand Harbor in oils by Linda D’Toole

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