Parents worry more but doing less to protect children on the Internet: Survey

Parents worry more but doing less to protect children on the Internet: Survey
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How worried are you about your children's online safety when they use the Internet? It seems parents are worrying more now than they did four years ago.

76 per cent of parents are either extremely worried, very worried or somewhat worried. This is what a recent survey by legal information website FindLaw.com has found. The survey was conducted among 643 parents. 

But despite the growing concern, it seems fewer parents are taking steps to safeguard their children from Internet dangers such as cyberbullying, online predators, inappropriate content and revealing too much of personal information. 

Two- thirds (66%) of those surveyed are taking precautions such as monitoring the websites their children visit, restricting their use of social media, reading their children's online communication or using site-blocking software. 

This number is down from 74 per cent four years ago, according to the survey results. 

"The vast majority of parents are taking at least some steps to protect their children from potentially dangerous aspects of the Internet," said Stephanie Rahlfs, an attorney and editor with FindLaw.com.

"But the numbers are declining. Parents are taking fewer precautions to protect their children, even though parents are more concerned than ever. Protective steps don't need to be time-consuming or expensive, and can be as simple as having proper privacy settings and knowing what your children are doing when they are online."

Here's a breakdown of the survey results: 

Parents worried about online safety (Figures in 2015 vs 2010):

Extremely worried: 15% vs 10%

Very worried: 20% vs 18%

Somewhat worried: 41% vs 39%

Not very worried: 17% vs 20%

Not worried at all: 7% vs 14%

Protective Steps Taken by Parents (Figures in 2015 vs 2010):

Monitor which sites they visit: 30% vs 35%

Use site-blocking software: 17% vs 21%

Restrict their access to computers: 14% vs 19%

Restrict their use of social networks: 15% vs 18%

Read their emails or social posts: 11% vs 17%

Don't allow any Internet use: 7% vs 8%

Other restrictions: 11% vs 29%

maryanns@sph.com.sg

 

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