(NEWS CENTER) -- Bullies used to have limited access to your kids, but not anymore.
"For kids and teens its 24-7 for them. The internet never shuts off," says Jayne Hitchcock, author and President of Working to Halt Online Abuse.
Five years ago, the Department of Education pushed a law through the legislature which prohibits bullying and cyberbullying in schools. The goal is obvious: to ensure the safety of students when they are on school grounds.
But what about when your kids aren't in school? Cell phones, laptops, IPads are all tools that bullies can use to send a constant stream of torment.
"One is saying, 'Hey, leave me alone,'" says Hitchcock, "The other keeps upping the ante."
Do you know which apps and social media sites your kids visit on a daily basis? Have you read any of their online conversations? Hitchcock says logging on is a good way to get insight, because chances are, your kids won't tell you what's happening.
"Most kids are afraid to go to their parents if they are being bullied online because they are afraid they are going to be punished," says Hitchcock.
She also says if you let you children sign up for something, they should expect that you will have complete access to it.
"As long as their child is living under their roof and they're paying their bills, they need to have the password to each and every account their child has online," says Hitchcock.
Keeping an eye on the online activity in your house hold can help you kids steer clear of bad situations.
Hitchcock's advice: "If you suddenly walk by their bedroom and see them hide their phone or shut their computer or whatever, it's time to have a talk."
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