Modern kids and teens are almost inseparable with all kinds of gadgets. And smartphones lead the charge here. According to AT&T study, children are 12 years old on average when they get their first mobile device with one in five of them receiving the phone at the age of 8. Another research by McAfee revealed that kids spend up to 7 hours a day on the screen with a smartphone being the major device to go online and communicate with peers.
Taking into consideration these figures, limiting kids’ screen time and protecting them from apparent and hidden digital dangers have become a powerful trend lately. The three priority areas within this framework are ensuring online safety, ability to locate a handheld device via GPS, and control over texting interactions (including a stack of keywords to block). While the first two appear obvious, the latter is often underestimated. And how wrong it is! The thing is texting is the most popular way to communicate among teens.
The other side of the coin involves sexting, which is sending sexually suggestive or abusing messages. A pallid statistics reveals the shocking number of 40% of teenagers who have sent sexts. Furthermore, 15% of teens sent their nude or semi-nude images to people they encountered and only interacted online. No wonder, parents rack their brains trying to figure out how to protect their children from perils that an uncontrolled texting may carry.
There are several steps a concerned parent should take to prevent kids’ digital misbehavior and resultant wrongdoings. First and foremost, talk to children about the threats like cyberbullying, online predators, identity theft, etc. Then, if you choose to monitor their mobile device, explain to them that you’re doing it not to control but to protect them, and agree on terms of monitoring. As to texting, modern parental control apps allow for tracking all messages and even blocking keywords to prevent kids from seeing inappropriate texts. Read on to know more about this useful feature.
Pumpic is a parental monitoring app available for iOS and Android devices. It has a built-in word blocking functionality to filter out SMS with the content you don’t want your child to see. The system is dead simple to work with: you just add terms or phrases to the keyword list to block. The app scans every received SMS, and if the match is found, the message is not shown to your kid. At the same time, you can view the text and the sender details it in the Control Panel.
Here are several most commonly used slang words, phrases, codes, and abbreviations that children operate when trying to keep the sense of the message secret:
Sexting and Dating Terms
Obscene and Drugs Terms
Note that this is just a very small part of teens’ conspiratorial language they use to hide the actual meaning of the conversation. Remember that teenagers are skilled texters, and they’ve mastered their talent to perfection. We advise you to visit our Glossary of Internet Terms to educate yourself on this matter. Thus, you will be able to decipher almost any coded message and fine-tune Pumpic keyword blocker properly.
“Very useful app! I’m not a geek, but I’ve read several reviews about parental control software and checked couple ratings by trustworthy specialized websites. With its broad functionality and reliability, Pumpic turned out to be the best value for the price. Now I have fewer things to worry about when it comes to ensuring my little boy’s safety both online and offline.”
“Thanks to Pumpic, I’ve managed to protect my son from bullies. I installed Pumpic to find out why he was acting weirdly, and was terrified to discover that he's text bullied. The first thing that I did was creating a list of blocked keywords, which included terms often used by bullies. Then, together with school staff, we figured out who bullies were and stopped them. Thanks once again, Pumpic!”
“Plenty of monitoring functions, easy installation, straightforward design. In short, very good and helpful app. Since we had installed Pumpic on our daughter’s smartphone last year and warned her about that, I can clearly see that she started acting more responsible and think thoroughly about consequences of her decisions. I’m satisfied with the result, and I’m satisfied with Pumpic.”