Two-thirds of kids contacted by stranger while playing online, new survey finds
More than 60% of children have been contacted by a stranger online while playing, according to a new survey from CyberSafe Ireland.
The charity, which works to keep young people safe online, has warned that a significant number of children are talking and interacting with strangers online.
The survey, which collected responses from 3,764 children aged 8 to 12, found that 61% of children report being contacted by a stranger in a game.
He revealed that it was an experience reported by 40% of boys and 22% of girls.
A third of children also play with people they don’t know in real life.
Many children also described discovering content online that upset or scared them, with 32% agreeing that some type of online content bothered them. Of those who had seen such content, 20% did not report it to a parent or trusted adult chat.
The charity also reports that nearly 30% of children have friends or followers they don’t know in real life, while 65% of children are registered on social media platforms despite a minimum age set. at 13 years old.
This represents an increase of 8% over last year.
“We know that asking children to never chat with people they don’t know in the context of an online game can be a difficult message to get across, as many see it as part of the game and all. That’s normal, ”said Philip Arneill, Head of Education and Innovation at CyberSafe Ireland.
“While we always encourage children to never interact online with people they don’t know offline, the key message should be never to share personal information with strangers online and to talk to an adult. trust if something or someone they meet online makes them feel scared or uncomfortable. ”
No news is bad news
Support the newspaper
Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you
Support us now
“We also need to put more pressure on online platforms to promote a safer use culture, taking a ‘safety by design’ approach,” he added.
The survey also found that 93% of children had some kind of smart device. The charity is now calling for a national campaign to raise awareness about how children can stay safe online.
CyberSafe Ireland CEO Alex Cooney said: “We all have a responsibility to ensure that children are better prepared for their lives online. We need education, we need public awareness campaigns, and we need proper regulation of online service providers. ”