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Almost Half Of Indian Children Admit To Meeting A Stranger Online

81% of the children within the age 8–16 years old indicate that they are active on social media

Intel Security released the findings of the 2015 edition of its Teens, Tweens and Technology Survey which examines the online behaviors and social networking habits of tweens and teens aged 8 to 16 years old in India. The study also surveyed the concerns of parents, revealing that when it comes to online activity, parents believe (48%) that the worst thing that could happen to their children is interacting with strangers online. This concern is warranted given that almost half (44%) of the children polled would meet or have met someone in person that they first met online.

While 91% of parents claim to have had a discussion with their children about the risks of social media, interacting with strangers is not one of the primary topics. The most discussed topics are cyber criminals and identity theft (71%), privacy settings (62%), cyberbullying (57%), online reputation (53%) or popularity among friends (52%). Additionally, a surprisingly low number (17%) of parents are interested in finding out if their children are interacting with strangers online. This indicates that while parents believe that interacting with strangers online may be risky, this knowledge has not translated into remedial action.

Melanie Duca, APAC Consumer Marketing Director, Intel Security says, “As with every edition of our Teens, Tweens & Technology survey, this year too, we see some concerning issues being raised. In analyzing the responses of both parents and children, what is evident is that that there are a lot more open conversations and disclosures between them. The good news is while there are open conversations, work is required on ensuring that these go beyond casual chats. It is imperative to focus on ensuring children understand the consequences of their actions as well as agree on good Internet etiquette.”

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