A new study finds that a quarter of parents are concerned that their children’s relationship with the Internet is unhealthy, revealing statistics about children’s interactions with the Internet in the West.
The study, released by Mozilla and YouGov, surveyed nearly 4,000 parents in countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, and more, and looked at children’s Internet usage habits, as well as parental controls set by families. .
This study follows recent changes to the UK’s Online Safety Act, which include the use of artificial intelligence technology to check the age of visitors to websites displaying sexual content.
And the UK’s communications regulator, Ofcom, recently found that a third of children were able to access such immoral content by lying about their age.
In terms of usage, 15 percent of UK children spend up to 10 hours a day online, and up to 75 percent use the internet for gaming and watching videos.-
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52% of UK children spend between 2 and 4 hours on the Internet per day, and the average age at which these children start using the Internet is six years, but 40% of parents introduce the Internet to them at the age of five. In Germany and France, the average is higher at 7 and 8 years, respectively.
Many UK parents said they were not confident their children could adequately protect themselves online, and 64% said they had set parental controls to restrict content. Moreover, 71 percent of them are concerned about the types of content their children can see, and 31 percent of them believe that the Internet is not entirely safe.
Key concerns for parents include: inappropriate content at 71 percent, online predators at 53 percent, and online bullying at 46 percent. With regard to the latter, the percentage is highest among parents with children between the ages of 10 and 13.
And 54 percent of parents in the UK were concerned about tracking data on their children, which is lower than respondents from other countries. However, 94 percent of parents in the UK do not believe that big tech companies have the best interests of their children in mind when creating products.
“The Online Safety Act is a good first step in tackling harmful misinformation, but it must be implemented in an effective manner by increasing oversight of content moderation decisions and holding social media companies accountable,” said Kaushal Amlani, Global Competition and Regulatory Adviser at Mozilla.