Online Child Safety ~ Cyber Bullying ~ Privacy ~ Social Media
Online Child Safety ~ A Real Problem!
I had an email the other day from a mom to let me know that she found my “bullying, mental, and physical impact” blog post while searching for information on online Child Safety and Cyberbullying. Evidently, her daughter had an incident at school and she was looking for much-needed information.
Anyone bullying, sexting, or manipulating any child on or off the internet needs to be shut down. She found a great guide source “The Ultimate Guide to Protecting Your Child Online in. 2022”. She wanted to share it with me as well as share it with all of you. (note: the original link was from an article in 2021 – the date I shared this information, however, this link is the updated version published in 2022.
Originally, This article, “Online Child Safety, Cyberbullying, Privacy, Social Media” was written in September of 2021 ~ below the original article, I added 2022 statistics and additional resources from Ben Hartwig and Lucas about the dangers of internet usage for our children and how to keep them safe. Keep reading for a wealth of information, great links, and startling statistics.
The above information should give you pause. The Guide explains what parents can do to protect their kids.
- Did you know that the average age for a child getting a cell phone is 8 years old! Having a working smartphone in an 8-year-old hand comes with additional responsibilities.
- Instead of putting a phone in their tiny hands, (to keep the little ones busy) invest in smart toys that resemble a phone but allow them to play games, read and interact.
- Hoping that things will be fine isn’t practical ~take action, check your kid’s activity and monitor their texts online activity.
There are EIGHT different areas that are discussed in this guide. I am outlining the EIGHT for you ~ but you need to “click right here” to review the guide yourself. Bookmark it, and Share it. Talk to your kids about each of the categories ~ Keeping our kids safe is key.
- Mobile Phones and Apps. ~. Handling your child with a smartphone has just given them unprecedented f freedom ~ you have just opened Pandora’s box! The average age at which a child gets a smartphone is 8 years old.
- Streaming Content and Smart TVs ~ children ages 4-6 consume 89 minutes of Television every day on average. Most of the big streaming content providers have parental controls ~ find them and use them.
- Gaming Consoles and Online Games ~ do you realize that 21% of all video. game players in the U.S. are under 18? Those games that have multi-player components, or are entirely based online make these kids more open to abuse from other players, harassment, and sexual advances through the game’s chat system.
- Social Media ~ 71% of teens use more than one social media platform. According to the non-profit group “Common Sense Media” showed that 8-12 year-olds were online 6 hours per day and 13-18 year-olds are online 9 hours per day.
Cyberbullying . . .
- Cyberbullying ~ these victims are 1.9 times more likely to commit suicide than those who do not experience online bullying. It occurs across all platforms and comes in different forms. Spreading rumors, sending threatening messages through social media, texting, and pretending to be another child. I have only outlined a few of the cyberbullying methodologies.
- Privacy and Information Security ~ kids are too trusting. They are more susceptible to malware, viruses, phishing scams, and identity theft. Kids sharing their full names and where they live may not seem like a big deal. Hackers posing as legitimate companies like google, send emails asking for your child’s password or pose as a friend or a relative.
- Viewing inappropriate content online ~ the internet is open and public. Kids can stumble on content that is confusing, upsetting, and distressing.
- Online Predators ~ According to the US. Department of Justice, 13% of young people n the internet have been victims of unwanted sexual advances. 1 in 5 has been solicited for offline contact. 50% of online victims of sexual exploitation are b between 12 and 15 years old.
2022 Updated Internet Safety Statistics.
The average age that kids get a digital device is “10”. Only 30% of parents are comfortable with speaking about internet safety with their kids. The Digital Citizenship Guide for Parents will definitely bring that percentage up a huge notch.
Cyberbullying ~ Gender-wise, 60% of teen girls and 59% of teen boys have experienced at least one abusive online behavior ~ (I find this horrific and disgusting) ~ Yet there is a steep rise in cases worldwide. There has been a 70% increase in cyberbullying and verbal abuse during COVID-19. Cyberbullying causes long-term damage and in many cases, they go unreported
Here is something to think about – 57% of people who intervene can stop Cyberbullying incidents within 10 seconds.
Follow this link to learn about Cyberbullying and Suicide Statistics. Those who experience cyberbullying are 12X more likely to have suicidal thoughts ~ (the cyberbullying suicide stats show)
Cyberbullying and Social Media Statistics . . .
Did you know that 75% of cyberbullying incidents happen on Facebook? Twitter and Instagram follow at 24% each and YouTube at 21% and TikTok only see 9% according to the statistics. It took Facebook 13 years to tackle “revenge porn” or distribute sexually explicit images without the person’s consent. Facebook introduced the appropriate regulations 13 years after its launch.
Instagram began to combat the promotion of self-harm 9 years after its launch. Their collection of hashtags and accounts depicting and documenting self-harm reached an alarming volume before they started combatting this horrible issue.
The internet is here to stay. Educating ourselves on how things happen and why it’s crucial to keeping our kids safe. It is not an invasion of your kid’s privacy ~ it is called education. It is called a parent’s responsibility to know what their kids are doing. There are many apps that can be utilized to monitor the usage of different electronic devices. That would be a subject for a new blog. Please review the resources listed below. They are meant to educate us and help us inform and keep our kids safe.
Great Resources . . .
- Ben Hartwig from Infotracer.com reached out to share the “Digital Citizenship Guide for Parents” with my readers. Teaching our kids how to utilize digital devices, services, and social media is crucial because of the internet, while a wealth of great information is also dangerous. Cyberbullying, Stalking, and Identity Theft are just a few of the issues we as parents need to be aware of. Kids are too trusting. Heck, many adults are the same way.
- Lucas from Cell Phone Deal reached out to see if this article ~ “Security and Your Phone ~ What are the Risks and How To Stay Safe” would be of interest to everyone. According to their article, most people think cybersecurity doesn’t apply to phones. Well, wake-up call! It most certainly does! They have put together a guide (click on the link above) that outlines the risks you face and how to keep you and your phone safe and secure
Online Child Safety is our #1 concern, keeping our kids safe is the goal.