Children's Online Activities, Risks and Safety


Children's Online Activities, Risks and Safety

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Portal Team

A new review from October 2017 by the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS) Evidence Group, made up of researchers from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), Middlesex University and the University of Central Lancashire, has highlighted the major risks, opportunities and emerging trends for children online.

The review informs the Government’s new Internet Safety Strategy, launched in the same month by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS).

Among the top level findings, the review highlighted:

  • One in ten children to one in five young teens say they encountered something worrying or nasty online in the past year.
  • Few children say they send photos to online contacts or reveal personal information, but a substantial minority use services ‘under age’.
  • While many UK children have learned to be cautious online, there is little evidence that their digital skills are increasing with time.
  • Cyberbullying estimates range between 6-25%+ depending on measures and the reasons for victimisation are diverse.

According to the review, children’s top online worries are pornography and violence; they say they encounter these most often on video sharing sites. Parents are most concerned about violence online.

The review also found that despite a number of strategies including technical controls, online rules and open dialogue with children, gaps remain in parents’ abilities to mediate their children’s activity online.

The review, which drew on research published since 2012, highlights the fact that children’s use of the internet continues to change, with new risks and safety issues arising.

Download the review here: