Electronic toys bring in a lot of new functionalities and possibilities. But also quite a few new risks. The Michigan Attorney General even lists smart and connected toys as among the most dangerous toys, WILX reports.
There are quite a few new risks and challenges parents have to tackle with electronic toys. Some of them are easier, but others require a lot of special attention.
Among the more challenging ones is with internet-connected toys. Connected toys can expose kids to online bullies, predators and other risks. So, it’s important that patents pay attention to such possibilities and act fast. Parents should also consider their child’s maturity level which can vary a lot from child to child.
The Michigan Attorney General’s Office also advises parents to check the privacy settings before handing it over to junior. “You don’t want any of your data shared in any way, shape, or form. You have to be mindful of what kind of controls are on the toy, and make sure your data isn’t being accessed,” Kelly Rossman-McKinney, who is the Communications Director for the Michigan Attorney General’s Office says to WILX.
You can also add additional safety layers. You can do this via the settings of your home internet router, add extra safety apps and so on. Basically, if you spend a little extra time, you can find a lot of suitable ways to help add extra safety online. Also, spend some time talking to your child about the risks online.
There are also some other risks, which are easier to tackle. For example to consider how easy is for the kids to get to the batteries of the electronic toys. This is why making sure the toys are age-appropriate is important.
Also you have to consider whether or not the kids could break parts off from the toy and swallow them. Or make sure that the kids know there’s electronics in the toys and they should keep them dry and clean. Basically, talking to your kids about it, is very important when it comes to electronic toys.