BY DAYO ADESULU
The powerful influence of social media on children has again been brought to the fore, as statistics show that 25% of Nigerian parents find something potentially dangerous in their children’s social media account.
34 per cent of parents stated that they had caught their children listening or watching either videos, music or photos. The parents said those suspicious of watching videos are 68%, music 43% and photos 25%
It was discovered that the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has forced families to spend their free time mostly at home. Staying at home usually also means spending much time using different Internet-connected devices. For clear reasons, children’s growing online activity can cause lots of worries for their parents.
Thus, according to a Kaspersky (www.Kaspersky.co.za) survey¹, 25% of Nigerian parents claim that they have come across something in their child’s social media account that seemed suspicious. Elaborating on what it exactly was, they mention groups or public pages they join (56%), posts that they publish or share (50%), people they interact with (31%), video on their page (31%) and private messages (19%).
What is more, 34% state their child has seen or listened to something that seemed suspicious to them, be that videos (68%), music (43%) or photos (25%). Obviously, this data shows the need to explore the interests of children, to make sure everything is okay or if it is necessary to take action. However, not all the parents realise it – only 19% of them befriend their children via social networks in order to be connected with their kids – sometimes real communication is not enough and the parents have to look carefully at their children’s webpages.
“It gets harder and harder for parents to keep up with the pace of the modern evolving world. They are often left out of the picture as they simply do not catch up with trends that emerge way too fast. However, it is possible to stop this backlog by communicating with your child and ensuring your presence on the Internet – to build trust and a good relationship with your child you have to know what you are talking about with them,” states Maher Yamout, Senior Security Researcher at Kaspersky.
In order to eliminate groundless suspicions about your child’s digital life and to secure their presence on social media, Kaspersky strongly recommends following this advice:
- Learn more on the topic of children’s cybersecurity: explore modern trends, apps, the way of behaviour that has to be adopted in order to safeguard against dangers (for instance, the basic security rules while on the Internet);
- Communicate with your child and define the boundaries which are not meant to be crossed: discuss with them safe locations both real and webpages;
- Install a reliable security solution such as Kaspersky Safe Kids (www.Kaspersky.co.za/safe-kids) to monitor your child’s activity successfully.
¹The “Digital Parenting” survey was implemented in conjunction with Toluna research agency in the end of 2019 – the beginning of 2020. 5000 respondents from META region and Baltic states participated in the survey
How COVID-19 Helps Parents Discovers Their Children’s Real Social Media Status