If your minor-children have a smartphone, the chance is very big that they have something wrong on their smartphone. It can be a setting, an application or an intruder that is manipulating your child via the internet – it can be anything, and that is one of the reasons why it is important to randomly check the smartphone of your child.
Before you go into police or detective mode, there are some things I would like to point out. If you are going to inspect the smartphone of your child – then it is wise to do it together with the child. Make sure that they understand why you are checking the phone, so that they can become aware of the dangers you are trying to keep away of your children.
Doing it together also allows communication to take place, this does not only benefit the awareness level of the child – it also allows you to bond more with your child.
So there are some points I would check if I got the request to check the phone for weird behavior, settings and contacts.
The first thing I would go for is to check if there is malware installed on the smartphone. The detection of malware is a strong indication that the smartphone device has been misconfigured – it is also a strong indication to see what the awareness level of the child is when it comes to cyber security.
You can install an antivirus application on the smartphone – just go to the official app store of the device and search for a known antivirus like Kaspersky. Install the antivirus, allow it to update itself to the latest version and then initiate a full scan on the smartphone.
If the antivirus reports that malware or unwanted applications have been found, then simply follow the instructions that are provided by the antivirus in order to remove the malware or unwanted application from the smartphone.
If you are trying to check the smartphone and the child is constantly coming up with reasons to stop you from checking the phone, then it might be a good moment to have a talk with your child. I strongly believe that parents / caretakers should be capable of communicating with their child – as always be patient and inform them why you are checking the phone.
You might be triggered once you see that your child is talking to an adult that you do not know – always make sure that you know with which people they are connected to via social media.
As mentioned before, it is important to raise awareness – using the ‘phone-check’ method could be the perfect way to raise awareness – because they will never forget the time you checked the smartphone!