Children today are spending an increasing amount of time online these days and cybersecurity and cyberbullying are major concerns for Indian parents. Norton by Symantec recently released findings from their Cyber Security Insights Report, which reveals parents have great concerns about their children in the online world. Online predators, privacy and family vulnerability are some of the biggest issues parents are grappling with as the impact of cybercrime takes over personal lives.
The Reality of Cyberbullying
The report found that one in three Indian parents believe their child will be a victim of online bullying, considerably higher than global average. And even more tellingly, close to one in two parents believe their children are safer from bullies on a playground than online. Not surprising then that Indian parents are 20 percent more likely to limit their child’s online activities.
More than half of Indian parents worry about children making the whole family vulnerable through their online activities. And most also worry that their children will be lured into illegal activities such as hacking, give too much personal information to strangers or be lured into meeting a stranger in the outside world. A very big and valid fear is that, what their children will post today will come back to haunt them in the future.
Ritesh Chopra, Country Manager, India, Norton by Symantec has this to say, “Protecting children online is weighing heavier on parents than ever before as the concerns for online predators and privacy are now “real” world concerns. It is interesting to note that compared to the global average, Indian parents are more worried about their children’s online safety and are more likely to limit their online activities to ensure safety. While parents are taking some measures to keep their children safe online, more action is needed to ensure children are less vulnerable in the digital world.”
Children are the weakest link in the family’s online security
Not surprisingly, nearly all parents surveyed worry about their children’s safety online – and in particular, how their actions will have repercussions on the family. Indian parents are more likely to take action to protect their children online. Disturbingly, three in five Indian parents report their child has experienced a form of online crime/ cyberbullying. Of these, Millennial parents and fathers in India are more likely to report their child as a victim. To alleviate these concerns, most parents are taking measures to protect their children online:
- More than half limit the amount of information they post about their children on social networks
- 53 percent limit the amount of information their children can post on their social profiles
- More than one in two limit access to certain websites
- 50% of parents only allow internet access with parental supervision
- Close to half the parents surveyed require computer use to take place in common areas in the home
Despite these measures, over one in three Indians know someone with a child whose actions have compromised their online security. Downloading a virus is the most common online crime parents report their children are experiencing in India.
Top Tips for Parents:
There are some actions parents can take to protect their children and keep their family safe online