As a nation, we need to protect the privacy of children and teenagers in the mobile and online worlds in which they live. The following key principles should be considered in formulating national laws, school policies, and designing community programs intended for families.
1. Unauthorized Tracking of Kids
2. The Eraser Button: Parents and Kids Should Be Able to Delete Online Information:
Easy-to-use “eraser buttons” will let parents or teens fully delete information they no longer want online.
3. No Behavioral Marketing to Kids:
Children and teens should not be targeted using their online personal information.
5. Privacy Policies Should Be Clear and Transparent:
Privacy policies need to be easy for users to find and understand and should be carefully monitored and enforced.
6. Parents and Children Should Be Educated About Online Privacy and Safety:
A privacy education program will help parents and kids do a better job of protecting their own and others’ privacy.
7. Privacy Protections Should Apply Across All Online and Mobile Platforms:
Privacy protections should apply to all platforms – including laptops, cell phones, and Web-connected video game consoles – and to all providers, including apps, ad networks, and websites.
Online privacy guarantees our fundamental right to privacy and our need to protect our children from potential harm. The extraordinary technological changes and new mobile and social media platforms that have developed in recent years have created entirely new environments for children and teens, with unprecedented implications for their privacy. It is time to craft national policies that will suite the 21st century.
Maribeth Oliver is a home-based micro-entrepreneur, writer and a mom.