Privacy policies should be reviewed to keep device-wielding children safe online

There are a lot of great apps available for your iPad, iPod or iPhone that were created specifically with children in mind. In fact, as we mentioned in a previous blog post, more children today are using technological devices at an earlier age than ever before, making apps useful tools for child development. However, as more children reach for their favorite devices, parents need to take a proactive approach to ensure the safety of both the child and his or her information.

According to a recent study conducted by Kids Best iPad Apps, only 104 out of 440 total kids apps include links to a developer privacy policy in its App Store promotional pages. In addition, apps that did feature these links did not always connect users to a virtual file of the privacy policy, instead redirecting them to a company website that did not provide the full details of the policy.

Demanding a safer, more family-friendly iPad
As MobileWorldLive noted, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission has taken recent action to protect children accessing mobile applications, extending the Children's Online Privacy Policy Act to include apps. This change, which goes into effect in July, means that companies need to receive parental approval before they are allowed to collect any online information about children who are under the age of 13.

In fact, there has been notable consumer demand for safer and more family-friendly iPads and apps. Writing an opinion piece for The Sydney Morning Herald, mother and iPad user Michelle Maltais shared her thoughts on the subject.

"Although our family encourages sharing, Apple really doesn't when it comes to its devices," Maltais wrote. "Unlike its tablet competitors such as Kindle Fire, the iPad/iPhone doesn't offer a 'kid mode'. Sure, the iDevices have the ability to turn on restrictions. Although the devices themselves are so intuitive that a child only a few months old can navigate them, these restrictions were clearly created by very bright folks who have little or no exposure to small children. Inexplicably, you have to reset the restrictions every time you click enable. In other words, if you want to turn them off for your own use, you've got to go step by step through each option all over again before passing the device back to an eager (and impatient) child."

Even if you take the best-known steps for protecting your child and his or her info from the world that the iPad opens up, you may not be able to protect the device from the child. If your toddler catapults your iPad across the living room, turn to iResQ's convenient and affordable iPad repair services to get your device fixed up in no time.

Marcelina Hardy

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