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Is YouTube Safe and Private? Best Practices to Secure Yourself

Last updated: February 25, 2024 13 min read
Is YouTube Safe and Private Best Practices to Secure Yourself

YouTube is a popular streaming platform that most netizens use to enjoy fun and educational content. However, you may wonder if this platform keeps all your activities private from outsiders or is safe to use. This post answers the question and provides valuable tips on improving your privacy on the platform. You will also discover ways to keep your kids safe on the platform.

You must have heard of or used YouTube, the treasure trove of video content for netizens. This video-streaming site boasts a vast collection of entertaining videos, including short films, movies, music videos, prank shows, and more. While all this can be fun, you may still have a lingering question concerning the platform’s safety.

You are here because you probably know how important it is to stay secure when using YouTube. This post will provide a detailed guide on protecting your privacy and staying safe on the service. You will also find helpful tips on how you can keep your children safe on YouTube.

Is YouTube Private?

Is YouTube Private

Sadly, it’s not! It’s hard to perform activities privately using YouTube because the site logs users’ data. You should know that the owner of YouTube is Google, a company well-known for being data-hungry. But this does not mean you have to abandon all your favorite YouTube content while searching for privacy.

Fortunately, there are ways for you to use the streaming service without having to compromise your privacy. One way to do so is to use a quality YouTube VPN. Once you connect to a VPN, you instantly mask your IP address, making it harder for websites like YouTube to monitor you and get your location data. So, if you connect to a VPN before watching any video on YouTube, you can browse the site without revealing your identity.

Another way to browse privately on YouTube is to avoid creating an account. Doing this will limit the personal data you provide the site with.

How Safe is YouTube?


The answer to this question depends on the way you use the platform. But generally, YouTube proves to be a safe platform. The site always ensures the removal of inappropriate or unsafe content or at least places them behind age restrictions. That way, young users and netizens without a YouTube account won’t be able to access the content.

However, some inappropriate content slips past these restrictions, so you must remain vigilant when using the platform. Aside from the inappropriate content, cybersecurity risks are also attached to this service. The site lets users insert links on any comment they type, which may be an avenue for phishers and hackers to misuse.

You may encounter malicious ads, which, if you click on them, may install malware on your device or leak sensitive information by mistake. However, there are various ways for you to use the platform safely.

Tips on Using YouTube Safely

Here’s how you can stay safe when watching videos on YouTube:

  • Don’t click on YouTube adverts: While the ads playing between the videos you watch are considerably safe, the same can’t be said for ads and pop-ups playing on YouTube Shorts. To avoid any security risk, it’s best that you do not engage with any of these ads.
  • Avoid links in the comment section: Not all users are on the platform for honest reasons. That’s why you shouldn’t trust any link in the comment section telling you to follow. These links are the perfect trap to attack your device with malware, phishing, and other threats.
  • Use YouTube Restricted Mode: This mode lets you keep inappropriate content out of reach. You can also lock the Restricted Mode so that no other user can deactivate it without you knowing.
  • Set up a strong password: Your YouTube account requires the same credentials as your Google account. Make sure you use a long password by combining uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Use ExtremeVPN’s password generator tool to set up strong passwords for your accounts. You can also set up two-factor authentication on your device.
  • Report inappropriate content and its creators: Sometimes, inappropriate content may find its way into your YouTube page, and the accurate response to such videos is to notify YouTube of them. You should also report the users who posted them as they are not following the YouTube community guidelines. Examples include videos with nudity or sexual content, spam, threat messages, hateful content, violent or graphic images, and dangerous activities.

What is YouTube Kids?

This version of the YouTube platform was built to be a friendly space for families and kids to enjoy entertaining videos. It does not have any age-restricted content in its library. You can download the YouTube app from your app store or use it on your web browser. While the platform is designed for kids’ use and keeps them safe online, it requires an adult to set it up.

Is YouTube Kids Safe?

YouTube Kids Safe

When compared to the regular YouTube version, YouTube Kids is unquestionably safer. Yet, we can’t say it is entirely safe for your kids to use without supervision. This is because kids can easily change the app’s settings on the account – all they have to do is solve an easy math puzzle to access the settings. That means a kid can change the content they can access without notifying the parent.

Even if they don’t figure out how to change the settings, some creators label their content kid-friendly but find loopholes to insert unfriendly scenes in their videos. An example of this situation is the ‘child-friendly’ show Elsagate, which contained a lot of inappropriate content.

If you want to ensure your kids’ safety when using this platform, it’s best that you enable the YouTube Restricted Mode. Activating this mode will only take a second; just click on your profile icon and select Restricted Mode.

How Can I Setup the Profiles and Parental Controls on YouTube Kids?

To create a YouTube Kids profile, you must first download and install the app on your device and verify you are an adult by entering your birth year. You must follow a few instructions to complete the setup process and modify parental controls.

  • Once you are done setting up your app profile, you will receive a prompt asking if you want to keep the search function on or off.
  • From the site’s home page, you will notice a padlock icon on the top-right corner of your screen. Once you click on the padlock icon, you will need to solve a simple math question to access the Settings menu.
  • On the settings page, you can change the age range of the content provided. You can also toggle the search function switch off or on, depending on what you chose before, create a custom password, and clear the watch history.

How Does YouTube Make its App Safe for Kids?

YouTube is trying to ensure its kids’ platform remains a safe haven that is free from inappropriate content. It hires content moderators and uses an advanced AI monitoring system to help block such content.

Creators also have the power to ban specific keywords and languages from their comment section, which can help reduce hateful and malicious comments. They even have the option to turn their comment section off.

YouTube focuses on organizing the content available on the YouTube Kids platform so that there will be limited exposure to harmful videos.

Is it Okay to Let My Child Start a YouTube Channel?

You can allow your child to create a YouTube channel, as this can be a rewarding and fun experience for your kid. However, remember that some of the platform’s features can make it simple for malicious users to violate your child’s privacy or safety.

So, if you plan on starting one soon, take a few precautions to ensure the channel remains safe. Read on to discover how you can do so!

5 Tips to Help Your Child Run Their YouTube Channel

5 Tips to Help Your Child Run Their YouTube Channel

Here are some tips you should consider in case your child decides to start their YouTube channel:

1. Check their Privacy Settings

Immediately after your kid creates their YouTube channel, you should help them modify their privacy settings into one you are both comfortable with. This is important, especially if you don’t want to expose your young child to mature content on the platform.

2. Monitor the Videos They Post

YouTube has strict rules regarding protecting its users’ privacy and copyrights. That’s why you will need to review the guidelines with your child to ensure they understand them before posting a video. To ensure your child doesn’t violate YouTube’s privacy policy, you can check the videos before they are posted.

If your child’s channel is flagged for hosting content that violates these terms, they may have the video deleted from their channel or get a penalty strike. If they keep getting penalty strikes, it may lead to their channel shutting down or, even worse, their entire YouTube account being disabled or suspended.

3. Don’t Forget about Ads

If your child’s YouTube channel gets popular, they may receive an invitation to join the YouTube Partner Program. This enables them to place ads on their content and earn a percent of whatever revenue YouTube generates from the advert. While this is cool, you may need to check the kind of ads and determine if the product or service is something you want your child to support. If it’s not, you can opt out of the Partner Program.

4. Explain the Social Impact of Running a Channel

We are in an era where anything can go viral, and people will share it with any interested party at lightning speed, making it hard to remove the video from the internet altogether. YouTube videos are no exception to this viral game.

Posting one video that shows your child in an unflattering manner can lead to them getting hateful comments, being bullied at school, or affecting future opportunities. As these viral videos can become what they will be known for, even after many years, you must lecture your child on the type of content they want to post.

5. Don’t be too Controlling

As much as you want to protect your child from every possible harm the internet wants to throw at them, you must keep their interest in mind. Offer help in any area where you can, but don’t be too overprotective. Remember that if you control every aspect of your child’s channel, they may want to run it without your supervision.

The best way to do this is to watch the content they post, go through their comment sections (if you decide not to lock it), and offer helpful suggestions when needed. If you provide advice instead of telling your kid what they can or can’t do, they will likely want to involve you in their channel’s operations.

What are the Best YouTube Alternatives for Kids?

What are the Best YouTube Alternatives for Kids

You can’t trust YouTube Kids completely even when you activate the Restricted Mode. There are still some questionable videos that may still find its way to your homepage. If you are considering trying other streaming platforms for your kids, check out these YouTube alternatives:

  • Netflix: This streaming giant offers easy access to parental control that will require any user to enter a PIN before they can access any mature content. You can even tailor the content on each account to be for different age groups. Fortunately, you don’t have to pay extra to make your Netflix account child-friendly if you are already a subscriber.
  • Nick Jr.: This platform is a network under the Nickelodeon umbrella that focuses on content suitable for kids to watch. Every video available on this platform is deemed safe for kids to watch. It also has an app that offers music and games that can help stimulate kids. The app is free, but you may need a Nick Jr. TV subscription to access all its content.
  • GoNoodle: This free app offers unique content that can help keep your kids active. The platform stands out from other alternatives by providing yoga and dancing tutorials and mindfulness videos for kids to enjoy.
  • KiddzTube: The service boasts a team of teachers who organize its content library with hand-picked videos from YouTube. They also include extra content like quizzes that can keep your child occupied. Besides its educative content, it provides music and cartoons to entertain your kids.
  • Jellies: This is a healthy YouTube alternative that offers educational videos suitable for kids to learn from. It even allows you to choose the topic you want your child to focus on.
  • KidsBeeTV: Perfect for pre-schoolers, KidsBeeTV presents well-organized video content that mirrors YouTube. It ensures that every video presented on its channel has an educational impact on your kids.
  • Kidoodle.TV: Although this service is similar to YouTube Kids, it takes a unique approach to curate its content and set parental controls. Built for kids up to 12, it is a safe digital space where children can explore different entertainment options. Parents can control their children’s screen time by setting time limits and disabling some videos, creating a safe play and learning environment.
  • DisneyNOW: This streaming app designed specifically for kids lets children watch already aired shows from Disney Channel, Disney XD, and Disney Junior. It also allows them to watch the live streams of some of their favorite Disney programs. You can also find some anime and Marvel shows alongside high-quality games your kids can enjoy. As a parent, you can set how much time you want your kids to spend on the app.
  • New Sky Kids: This platform allows adults and kids to learn together and interact with each other. It allows parents to create educational videos together with their children, which can help their kids’ learning process. New Sky Kids aims to teach kids simple manners such as thank you, please, sorry, etc.


Generally, YouTube can be considered a safe platform but not a private one. That’s because the site is guilty of logging and monetizing its users’ data. However, you can free yourself from all these risks if you connect to a quality VPN before watching videos on the platform. ExtremeVPN offers the best online safety and privacy that lets you stay protected while watching videos on YouTube.

Also read: Top 17 Best YouTube Alternatives and Competitors in 2024


Can I make my YouTube channel private? Up
Yes. By adjusting your privacy settings, you can control who you want to view the content you post on your channel.
How can I turn on YouTube Restricted Mode? Up
You can do this on the YouTube app in simple steps: 1. Log in to your YouTube account. 2. Tap on the gear icon to access the settings page. 3. Select General. 4. Scroll down until you find Restricted Mode and toggle the switch beside it on.
How can I report an inappropriate video on YouTube? Up
Follow the instructions below to do so: 1. Tap on the three vertical dots beside the video thumbnail. 2. Select Report. 3. Choose the reason you want to report the video and tap Report.
Which is the best VPN for YouTube? Up
When protecting your privacy and securing your data on YouTube, you will need a quality VPN that can assure you of reliable service. ExtremeVPN stands out as the best YouTube VPN. Designed with high-grade AES encryption alongside strong security and privacy functions, you can rest assured of optimum protection when using YouTube.

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About the Author

Minhal is a content writer specializing in cybersecurity and tech news. With a background in journal...
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