How safe are our children online?

Worldwide, the number of internet users has spiked after the inventions of smartphones and the advancement in the IT field. Almost half of the world is now connected through this infinite web which brings us as humans forward, together. Social apps such as Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp and Snapchat have garnered huge amount of followers worldwide.

Although being more accessible is good, there are certain irresponsible quarters who misuse this piece of technology for their own personal gain. Online predators, stalkers and scammers are always on the lookout for vulnerable or easy prey’s. Naturally, people of the younger age spend a lot of their time online to fit in with their peers but sadly, they lack the knowledge to know what to do when facing with this kind of problems.

Malicious malware have also been created to hack into peoples computers and steal vital information from them such as stored passwords, bank account details and pictures. Children without the supervision of an adult could be easily brainwashed to believe an outsider if they hold a piece of information that is familiar to them.

Illicit popups are also are problem that can damage a child forever. There are a bunch of pornography-type popups that appear out of nowhere when you open a webpage you intended to view. Children who see this might get traumatised or even worse, be influenced to copy what they see. Children are innocent beings that follow what they see and do as they are told to without first considering the good and bad of it.

Parents should be the forefront to prevent cyber crimes from happening in their household, especially to their children. Without their intervention, not much can be done. Proper supervision and guidance is vital for their children’s safety while browsing online. Internet privacy settings have to be adjusted properly to fit the usage of the user. There are plenty of internet security firms that have set up programs to track your online activity and this is rather useful to see what your child has been doing online.

Government agencies have also set up laws to enforce against cyber bullying yet the main responsibility rests on the parents itself. In Malaysia, the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development (MWFCD) is the front runners working on the Malaysian National Action Plan on Child Online Protection.

What is a child’s right? Know them. Demand them. Defend them.

Empower children to secure their rights. Thank you.

Bavaani Priya @ Preemikha
Written Content Manager
The Child Awareness Project

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