A teenage girl sweetly offered to buy milkshakes for her parents. Chocolate for Dad and vanilla for mom. Sadly these milkshakes were spiked with sleep-inducingpharmaceuticals. Why on earth would a teenager drug their parents to make them fall asleep? To get more time on the Internet of course! True story. These are the stories that no matter how bizarre they sound make us question the reality we live in and what we can do to prevent them in our own lives.
The story made headlines last month after the drugged parents passed out, woke up in a stupor of grogginess and subsequently failed drug tests after suspecting something was awry. Turns out their daughter and a friend made a plan to drug their milkshakes by lacing them with crushed prescription sleeping pills so that they could enjoy a little more time on the Internet and bypass the Internet curfew laws put in place by the parents. The girls, ages fifteen and sixteen, felt that the 10 PM curfew for household Internet usage was too strict.
According to investigators the younger girl told them that she thought her “parents” Internet policy was too strict. Internet access at the family’s home was shut off every night at 10,” and so they developed a plan of action. It’s unclear as to what the girls wanted to do online or what websites they wanted to visit, but “the girls wanted to use the Internet, and they’d go to whatever means they had to,” Lt. Lon Milka said.
Last week we talked about keeping our kids safe on the Internet. It’s a concern that most parents will eventually have to face as their children start using a computer and other Internet connected devices. It’s a growing concern for parents to continue keeping their family safe on the Internet, especially in the home. The parents in the story may have created Internet curfews in their household to keep their kids offline during late night hours such as school nights or after bed times when they are less likely to be monitored. Although it’s unclear as to what system they had in their house to enforce these rules on their network- whether someone manually shut off wireless Internet access or if it happened automatically at 10 p.m. each night, it didn’t stop the teens from drugging the parents to get online. What struck me is the very nature of the act, how desperate these teens were to get online and the lengths they were willing to go to for some digital connection. In my teens, my parents had similar rules about using the phone after hours. My friends and I could talk on the phone all night long. Even though we had the Internet at my house, there weren’t as many fun things to do online ten to fifteen years ago and most of my friends weren’t available for chatting on AOL Instant Messenger, anyways.
In the end, it doesn’t really make much of a difference what the girls were doing online, after their bold disregard for breaking curfew and endangering the parents. Imagine if they crushed too many sleeping pills and the parents overdosed? Thankfully, no one was harmed, but this story opens a new platform of discussion on Internet safety, creating rules for your family, and more importantly how you can regulate your home’s network. This family implemented Internet curfews in their house, and although we do not know how they enforced them technology wise, we do know how we can help you in your own home with our HomeNet Router, a first of its kind intelligent router.
The HomeNet Router provides many features that allow you to customize your home’s network. It’s a wonderful tool for parents who want to keep their children safe on the Internet and set family guidelines or curfews for Internet usage per user and/or per Internet-connected device in their home. What’s most exciting is that it’s entirely up to you and your discretion. Fully customizable and fine-tuned to your family’s needs. Here are just a few helpful the HomeNet Router features that can assist you in ensuring your family’s Internet safety.
Internet Management & Scheduling – Besides being able to effectively manage your Internet bandwidth in real-time, you can prioritize your bandwidth on any device connected to your network. Then, you can create device priorities for different times of day and control the bandwidth each device receives. The scheduling feature further optimizes bandwidth and allows you to automatically control devices’ bandwidth when you want it, where you want it. This means, that you can enforce that 10 PM Internet curfew on all your kid’s network connected devices.
IP & Website Tracking – With IP & Website tracking, you can review the history of every site visited by any device on the network from the control of your own device. It’s a great tool for parents to monitor and safeguard that their children are surfing safely on the Internet.
Notifications – This feature sends e-mail and/or text notification when devices connect to or disconnect from your home network. It’s great for parents, to monitor when any of your family members cellphone or other device connects to the network or disconnects. Imagine getting a text when your teenager arrives home or leaves when they go out. This is also another safeguard feature that can notify you if someone is using the Internet when they are not supposed to be – assuming that you haven’t been milkshake drugged and are capable of checking notifications.
To learn more information about the HomeNet Router and how you can pre-order one for your own family, click here.
Both teens were taken to Juvenile Hall and booked on suspicion of conspiracy and willfully mingling a pharmaceutical with food. Placer County prosecutors have not decided if they will file charges.