Five things to ask before giving your kids their first phone


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Unsure if your kids are ready for their first phone, and if you're ready for all that it entails?

Here, according to the Cyber Safety Lady, Leonie Smith, are the top five questions every parent should ask before gifting their progeny that first device.

1. How much do you know about smartphones and all the apps that your kids are likely to use? Are you willing to educate yourself about parental controls and restrictions?

giving kids their first phone when to give your child their first phone

2. What is it about a smartphone that you would prefer over a dumbphone (calls and texts only)? If tracking, might a smartwatch (with tracking device) be a better investment?

3. How responsible is your child? Smartphone screens, for instance, break very easily.

4. What is the school's policy on smartphones? Is it going to work with what you want?

5. Do you know where to go for help if something goes wrong on that phone? How might you cope should your child get cyber-bullied?

You can access safety resources for parents and refer any cyber bullying, illegal content and image-based abuse to the Australian eSafety Commissioner at The e-book Keeping Kids Safe Online is available from

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Richard Scott is an English freelance writer based in Queensland. A former sports reporter for The Times in London, he has written for Australian Geographic, Australian FourFourTwo, Virgin Australia Voyeur, The Courier Mail, Junkee, AWOL, FHM and Cleo in Australia.

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