Why should I be reading about statistics?
Reading about statistics can feel a little bit theoretical and irrelevant to one’s situation. When we read about the odds of an event happening, we often feel safe thinking we are unlikely to be that one person, or part of that group of persons, on the wrong side of the statistics.
However, that one person (or group of persons) is always going to be someone, a real human being, and it might be you. It is worth remembering that when it comes to risks which are mostly avoidable by learning and practising safety skills, falling on the right side of statistics is rarely a matter of pure luck.
Helping children acquire key skills to stay safe online starts with being aware of the realities of the online world. The following statistics will give you an idea of what goes on online.
IN A NUTSHELL
These are, by categories, key statistics we think you’d be interested to know about:
1 in 3 internet users worldwide is a child.
Every half second, a child goes online for the first time.
At any one time, 750.000 individuals are estimated to be looking to connect with children for sexual purposes.
Nearly 50% of children between the ages of 9-16 experience regular exposure to sexual images (Australian survey).
At the age of 11, 28% of children surveyed had seen online pornography, by the age of 15, the figure increases to 65% (UK survey).
About 27% of teens say they have received a sexually explicit electronic message (being a photo or video or text). Nearly 15% of teens reveal having sent a sext. 12% of teens admit having forwarded a sext without consent. (American survey).
More than 33% of young people report being victim of online bullying.
In Australia, the number of children and teens aged 8–17 who have been victims of cyberbullying was estimated around 463,000.
Sharing personal information
About 34% of kids (aged 8-13) and 82% of teens (aged 14-17), use social media (Australian survey), and share the following personal information:
· Photo of face: kids 47% - teens 58%
· Last name: kids 27% - teens 45%
· Real age: kids 21% - teens 38%
· School or photo of uniform: kids 19% - teens 27%
· Phone number or address: kids 6% - teens 9%
Parents and caregivers are less likely to be intimidated by online risks if they are informed and take an active role in their children's digital lives.
Should you wish to spend some time further reading, the sources for this article are listed below: