Devoted to the safety of children and teens online

Texting, Instant Messaging, Chatting, and Cell Phones

The Internet is an ever-changing source of information. Inevitably, some of the links below will stop working. We will do our best to keep links current and remove broken links.

Our Advice

We do not recommend that children below grade 6 have an instant messaging or video chat account. NO children should be using sites like ChatRoulette at all.

SourceLink Info
AdviceWorried about your child chatting with strangers? Block, a website designed for talking to strangers.
ResearchPEW Project: Teens and Sexting - A website devoted to keeping safe while chatting online
ResourceTeen Safety on the Information Highway - includes risks by area including chatrooms
Tips to Prevent Sexting
Chat Room Safety Tips
Cell Phone Safety Tips
Is Sexting a Teen Trend: Study
Chatroom Dangers - "a chatroom is probably the most dangerous place on the Internet".
Know the Dangers of Instant Messaging
Instant Messaging Tips
Cell Phone Tips
Instant Messaging tips
How safe are video chats like TokBox?
Do you know who your kid is IMing?
Responsible Text Messaging Tips
Do you know who your kid is IMing?
ResourceUnderstanding IM, Chat and Texting Slang. WARNING: These sites are likely to contain offensive language.
Chat Abbreviations from
Internet Slang Dictionary and Translator
Teen Chat Decoder
ResourceAOL and Instant Messaging (AIM):
AIM and Yahoo Messenger Parental Controls
AOL Parental Controls
SoftwareTools to monitor your child's IM
McGruff (PC Only, Not Apple Mac)
WebWatcher Computer Monitoring Software (PC Only, Not Apple Mac)
PC Activity Monitor (PC Only, Not Apple Mac)
Key Logger and IM Monitor (PC Only, Not Apple Mac)
Spector Pro Monitoring Software: for Mac | for Windows
SafeEyes Parental Control Software monitors IM (Apple Mac)
Keylogger for Mac (Apple Mac)
USB Keylogger by KeyCobra (both platforms supported)
TutorialButterscotch Tutorial on How to Monitor Your Child's IM
ArticleUnderstanding the benfits and risks of texting
ArticleTalking to Kids About Sexting
ArticleTexting May Be Taking a Toll
ArticleWhy I won't buy my 10-year old a cell phone - from the Children's Medical Center at Dayton.
ArticleRisks and vulnerabilities of IM applications - from SANS Institute of Information Security.