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How to protect your children’s data under COVID-19?

Várható olvasási idő: 12 perc

Protecting digital data is important. It has been important and we have written about it several times, but now that we have got this coronavirus called COVID-19 … it has become a particularly important factor. From my own experience, I see that many, indeed, very, very many people are unaware of the things they are doing in the digital world that could be seriously abused in a not-too-distant future.

If you’re reading our site because of the crypto, this article isn’t about that right now. With this article, we want to help those who haven’t really used digital tools so far and aren’t aware of the basics. Or they used it, but they lack the basics like password management, account management, file management, Office 365 usage!

The digital world can be dangerous for those who don’t know it. We are at risk from many directions and if we cannot deal with them, we can become victims.

Let’s start with the basics

Our child receives the curriculum for home schooling – from the school a couple of weeks ago. Teachers have been forced to use a system that most of them are not familiar with. They ask our children to create Skype, Messenger, Google, Discord, Slack, Zoom, and in worst case Facebook accounts. Then go there and start using these as classroom.

All this without having basic information about digital devices. They don’t know what a file system, file, folder, operating system, hard drive, SSD, flash drive, cloud, data copy, or save a file as. Not to mention password management.

New tablet story

I came across someone who got a tablet for the purpose of the grandparent helping with the education and then the kid realized a few days later that he couldn’t download apps. Mostly because 6GB of the tablet’s 8GB of internal memory was occupied by the operating system (Android). There is room for a couple of photos, music, 1-2 app left.

The child couldn’t use it, the parent didn’t know how it worked because computer science wasn’t his specialty. (And we don’t read user manuals…) They should have just looked at the device to see if there was an expansion option, as it has a microSD slot. (It was a Lenovo tablet, with a blue Lenovo label on the left under the socket, in case you have one.)

If you are new to digital devices, here is an important information. 99% of non-Apple products have memory expansion capabilities! Use the built-in memory for the operating system only! There is no expansion option for Apple devices. It is what it is. If you buy an Apple device now, buy one with as much memory capacity as possible!

What should we learn?

In the current situation, our children shouldn’t memorize historical details, because it is available on Wikipedia. But they should learn computer basics. Because just as a house does not exist without foundations, they cannot exist in the digital world without understanding the file system.

So far, children have had their bags full of school books and exercise books, now they have a computer, or in a worse case, an account on the computer, or worse, no account at all, they are just trying to learn using their parents’ instructions. Somehow.

The first basic thing you can do is to create your child’s own account on your computer now, or if you bought him or her a computer, on his or her own. If you have multiple children on one machine, each one should have a separate account on the computer. If you bought him a computer yesterday and didn’t do so, or a few weeks earlier, it’s still not too late.

In Windows Settings, you can do this in the Accounts menu. Each user should have their own account that they use to log in. So if you have 2 kids and say both of them use Office 365, the accounts won’t be confused.

It is important that they create their own digital environment. It’s not that you don’t to see what he’s doing. It’s important to hold hands in the beginning, so you often have to sit next to him and teach. The login password or PIN code should be one that you know as well and can manage your kid’s account if necessary. For example, with the materials to be up or downloaded… It is unnecessary for him to sit there, you as a parent may be able to do this faster. He can go to the garden to play ball while you do those tedious parts!

You need to create a friendly environment for him not feel strange. It might start with having a background that is friendly. Choose one together! This can be one of the defaults in the first round. The next step can be to search the Net for a cool background. Teach him to search the web!

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If you are just starting out and using Windows

In this section, we provide examples of solutions that work with Windows. It’s similar for MacOS, so if you’re reading this and using MacOS, you can convert the information to MacOS.

By the way, we use MacOS ourselves, but we bought a Windows-based notebook for our children earlier this year -before we found out that the school year will become digital education.

What to do with your children? We will describe it later, read on!

First, teach him a few very important basics. It’s not complicated. These are important to lay the groundwork for your virtual world.

  1. File system and the proper management of your computer – the Internet will be the last step.
  2. Teach them English, as English is the computer language.
  3. Learn the basics of shorthand typing.
  4. Do not use Skype or Messenger as the basis of communication for your child.
  5. Use Office 365, if your teacher uses Hangouts, you will probably switch to Office 365 sooner or later…
  6. Teach your child finance. We will help you with this in detail, and there are a lot of these types of content on our site. Meet them!

All of these things can be quite simple if you understand how computers work. If you don’t really understand, we will try to help you.

File System

Get started easily. If you are using Windows, teach your child what a Desktop is, followed by a Tray. Show him how to create a folder on the desktop. Let’s not complicate things, let’s get started with the basics.

Right-click with your mouse on the desktop and there is an option: New Folder in the menu. What we have applied with our own children is a very basic idea. Think of your own house.

It will teach your child the first step to creating folders and files using a digital house. Our example:

  • rooms (kitchen, living room, bedroom, etc.) = folder
    • appliances (sofa, table, closet, etc.) = folder
      • device parts = files
        • and the components of the components should be included in the files

More specifically, perhaps more clearly:

  • kitchen (folder)
    • refrigerator (folder)
      • top shelf (folder)
        • butter (file)
        • cheese (file)
      • middle shelf (folder)
        • tomato (file)
      • bottom shelf (folder)
        • bag (folder)
          • apple (file)
  • living room (folder)
    • wardrobe (folder)
      • case (folder)
        • photo album (folder)
          • photo1 (file)
          • photo2 (file)
  • bath (folder)
    • bathtub (folder)
      • bathing water (file)

The Folder is easily understandable. As for the files… play with the files first on a Notepad. Why? Because by this we can teach what a byte is. If you create a file on your Notepad, just count the letters you use – each character is one byte.

Try!

Create a new Notepad / Notepad file on your desktop. Then enter a few characters. For our example, use “virtualis.cash”. Without quotation marks. (Here again, a basic question arises as to what the quotation mark is. Which is “and”. The text between the two is in quotation marks.)

Virtualis.cash has a total of 14 characters. This 14 characters indicates that our file will be 14 bytes in size.

If you have the file you created as before and look at its properties (Right click on the file and click on Properties at the bottom, you will see that it is 14 bytes in size).

But the whole point of the previous paragraphs is to know that 1 character is 1 byte in size. Understand the basics! Because what comes next, is still just the very basic level.

What is winchester, storage, cloud?

In the time of the Indians and cowboys, the winchester was a handgun used to shoot down an opponent. This is not the case now, but a little fun with words doesn’t hurt. ? Winchesters have developed a lot in recent years. There are several types, these are called containers. The list below is based on speed, but it is important to know that winchester is the storage. A repository of your data. Byte storage. What types can they be?

  • SSD
  • HDD
  • DVD – this is a disc that can be stored, saved, but increasingly “worn out”, the Cloud is coming next.

An SSD is a storage device where data (images, text documents, spreadsheets, etc.) is on a digital storage device where there are no moving parts. The HDD is a slower storage with moving parts like disks and a reader. These devices store digital data.

Data Center with servers

The cloud means that there are server parks, with servers that have such disks. They provide the infrastructure behind the Internet.

What can we do now?

We need to teach our children and their teachers also need to learn a lot. I think that in the 2019/2020 school year, everyone will pass the exams, they will graduate, they will all end the school year, they may even get their degree.

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All because our teachers also need to learn digital education. At all levels. Be it a university / college, high school, or elementary school.

And this is a straight path to change our lives as we know it.

We all have to learn. We need to understand that everything will change. But if we don’t get it, we can’t move on, learn and get smarter in this digital age.

Our smart home is not smart home because it is smart. Someone has taught your home to be smart. Someone wrote those codes and programs ?

Do you understand?

If not, it’s time to scroll back to basics. What is a file… Scroll up and read it again!

Little detour, to Bitcoin

Bitcoin is a distributed file-based system. Because our data is not only stored on one server, but many others AS WELL. Each transaction in the bitcoin system reaches every node where it is run, operated, authenticated. But learn about this later, now the important thing is for the child to develop and learn about the computer world!

You have to learn to type fast

In order for a child to communicate effectively, he must learn to type. So far, he’s obviously been tinkering with two fingers, but that’s not effective. He should learn where each character is on the keyboard. There are good tutorials for this on YouTube as well. It’s important to get used to which character is where.

Even if you don’t know how to type with 10 fingers, you should know where the characters are.

What instant messenger do you choose?

In many cases, there is not much choice because the teacher will tell you what to use. If you are using a Windows-based system… Skype can be good because you don’t have to register a new account with a new password.

But if you’re using Office 365, it’s also great for exchanging ideas with classmates in Teams.

It is important that the child does not spend too much time in front of the computer sending smilies to others through messengers. Grandma doesn’t need to spend time during the day talking to the kids. We need to keep in touch, but schedule these calls. Especially with Family Members! Let’s set a time to chat and don’t just call in the middle of the day. Let’s assume that kids are in school (home school in this case)

We do not recommend using more than two messenger app, because it takes up time and space on the device. One that you talk to your classmates with, and a general one like Skype. And if you’ve sent a message, don’t sit in front of the machine and wait for it to get a response. You can do several things while you wait. You need to learn multitasking!

Video chat only if you really have to

You know there are face recognition systems, right? In China, they are using payment options with face recognition, and even to evaluate people with a face recognition system. Read an earlier article on the subject! (Hungarian, but use the Google translate!)

So, only use video chat if you really have to. If possible, do not upload pictures of your child if you are using Zoom. Be aware that people can listen in and watch the communication! Take care of yourself and your children’s privacy as well. Most importantly, your kid’s privacy.

Don’t even upload a picture of your kids to the Internet, and especially not to social networking sites (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.)!

Password Management

If the child is jumping into the digital age now, he needs to be prepared to use passwords. It’s not Mom’s maiden name that needs to be given as a password, nor Bobby’s dog name, but a string of characters that he knows (or until he’s 18 the parent too!) He needs to be able to use it effectively. We published another article on password management that is worth reading (Hungarian, but use the Google translate!). We recommend using a password management system, because a lot of passwords are needed to use in the digital world!

Basics of using Office 365

It’s worth clarifying at the outset that Office 365 wasn’t created primarily for education, but for business purposes, and the demo video below is all about that.

Despite all this, more and more schools are switching to using Office 365. Google knows pretty much the same as Microsoft does, only it has no desktop application.

Ideally, the school has already registered students who have been given an email address [email protected] with which they can use to log in to Office 365. Once logged in, the first step should be to change the default password based on what you wrote earlier. Once that’s done, we can start to explore.

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The main difference between Microsoft and Google’s system is that Google only works in the browser, and Microsoft can be downloaded as a program to the computer. In recent decades they moved to the cloud.

Once you have the password change, familiarize yourself with the main parts. If you would rather work on your machine rather than in the cloud, download Office, install it, and work from the program! If schooling takes place in Office 365, the software should come free. It’s important to note that the size of Office is large enough, so first check to see if you have enough capacity on your machine.

If you’ve recently bought a computer, it’s worth knowing that there are many new machines that come with 2 bins. The primary is an SSD running the operating system (remember the Lenovo tablet written at the beginning of this article?), And the secondary is an HDD that is worth storing data on.

It is worth building a “house” on the hard drive based on what was written earlier and storing and organizing the files received from the teachers, the pictures taken on the phone or digital camera that may be returned at the beginning.

If we are storing things systematically, we will be able to find it later, and in a few years if we are looking for something. It is also important to store only files that are important to store. Computer disks have limited capacity.

But you can also use Microsoft OneDrive by connecting it to your machine. By default, Office programs (if installed on your computer) also recommend saving to OneDrive. By default, children are given 1 GB of space. In this case, OneDrive stores the files on Microsoft’s servers, the disks of its servers, and this is important to know.

These files are encrypted and even the connection itself is encrypted by Microsoft. There was a data wiretapping scandal in the summer of 2013, but since then they have taken a lot of steps to make the data private even if it is in their server park.

The following can be used as slides in Office 365:

  • Outlook – this is your email program, through which you will be notified when something happens
  • OneDrive – we wrote about this before, this is your data store in Office 365
  • Word – this is where you can edit texts (similar in appearance to the desktop program)
  • Excel – here you can manage spreadsheets (similar in appearance to the desktop program)
  • PowerPoint – presentation creator, viewer (similar in appearance to the desktop program)
  • OneNote – a common workspace, through which children are currently given assignments in several schools
  • SharePoint – websites can be created by anyone who deals with it, does not read such articles ?
  • Teams – individual and group conversations can be held, several schools hold classes through this, they talk in groups.
  • Sway is also a presentation tool, quoting Microsoft as saying, “Without graphics, we can create clear, creative presentations that look great on any device and screen size.”

But if your kid wants to take full advantage of Office 365, there are still plenty of options to try, learn, test in your spare time instead of thinking about COVID-19.

  • People – business card management
  • Calendar – calendar management
  • Tasks – custom task management
  • Video – video management
  • Etc.

You can navigate from one Office 365 interface to another by clicking on the 9 dots in the upper left corner.

This was our short introduction to the digital age – to help you teach your kids the basics. In doing so, they help the work of teachers, whom now don’t have enough hours in their day to teach, check homework, create online classrooms… and meanwhile they are now learning most of the basics of computers themselves.

Even in higher education, not every teacher necessarily has the skills to move from classroom to digital education overnight, so it’s deep water for everyone, but it’s time to learn to swim!

And if you have the basics and want to embark on the path of learning what Bitcoin is, what a blockchain is, or what cryptographic wallets are, you can move on using the links below in Hungarian language! (Use the Google Translate!)

If you share this article, thank you and pass on the info above to others! Take care of Yourself and your Children!

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