A Comment From Sandra About MySpace.com
Just wanted to update you on getting rid of the xxx-rated e-mails I've received since my grandson went to a website called "My Space".......Since changing my Outlook Express address and opening a Hotmail account for newsletters I have not received even one of those nasty mails...Hurrah!  My only concern now is that my grandson has access to AIM and Yahoo Instant Messengers on my computer.  As long as he doesn't send any e-mails will I be okay?  Just doing the instant stuff won't give away my OE address will it?  I know....I'm sounding paranoid....can't help it...those darn creepy e-mails were a nightmare.  Thanks for letting me rant. Keep up the good work. Sandra

Our Comments
Thanks, Sandra. MySpace is a site that caters almost exclusively to teens. This kind of site when used by unsupervised teens can lead to big trouble - if you want to read one mother's assessment click here. We strongly caution parents and grandparents of teens to keep an eye on them and make sure they're not posting personal information like telephone numbers, email addresses, home address, date of birth, school, etc. on MySpace. 

AIM and Yahoo Instant Messengers in the wrong hands can put lots of objectionable material on your computer - and even worse some of the worms, trojans, and now even rootkits are being specifically targeted to instant messaging clients like Yahoo and AIM. Your grandson could innocently give out your email address to someone and they, in turn, could give it to someone else.

What we'd advise is that you get him his own email address that can only be accessed from the Web - like a Yahoo account. Let him send and receive all the emails he wants. As long as he's restricted to sending and receiving mail from the Web you're going to be a lot safer. Yahoo mail has decent AV protection and we assume that you do as well.

And, one other thing we strongly urge you to do is setup a restricted user account for him. A restricted user account on Windows XP cannot download or install files. This would give you an extra layer of protection. And, please, if you have not already done so, password protect your Windows XP user account with a good, strong password. (Click here to learn how to create strong passwords). Allow your grandson to use the restricted user account only. If he needs to have a program installed or a file downloaded, then you can do it for him from your administrator account. Good luck and thanks for sharing your experiences with us.

For more reading on this subject see http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/02/03/scitech/pcanswer/main1277909.shtml

Please, help keep your child or grandchild safe.

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