Teen Internet Statistics
A recent study from the American Psychological Association found some interesting results regarding the statistics of Internet predators and today's youth. They found that the majority of Internet predators do not pose as children as the prior conception of the Internet predator stereotype was perceived. The Internet Predators openly tell their age and their intentions and your kids openly talk to them about their own sexual desires. Scary.
In the past, the thought was that the Internet predators were duping teenagers into thinking they were talking to a kid their own age. The statistics of this study shows that teenagers are knowingly chatting to adults. It is a brave new world. A world where our children still need to be protected from their curiosity. Of course, the children do not tell their parents whom they are chatting with so how are parents supposed know who their kids are chatting with on the Internet. With the advent of MySpace, Facebook and the other thousands of social networking and chat sites on the Internet, danger is only a click away. The Internet predators are out there and your kids are willingly chatting with them.
It seems that there is another dangerous trend that teenagers are participating in called Sexting. That is when a teen sends nude or semi nude pictures of themselves and sends them to other people with their cell phone. Parents need to be aware of this new trend. Check out the sexting statistics here.
Here are some of the statistics from the study by the American Psychological Association called Online "Predators" and Their Victims: Myths, Realities, and Implications for Prevention and Treatment:
- Internet offenders pretended to be teenagers in only 5 percent of the crimes studied by researchers.
- Nearly 75 percent of victims who met offenders face-to-face did so more than once.
- Online sex offenders are seldom violent, and cases involving stalking or abduction are very rare.
- Youth who engaged in four or more risky online behaviors were much more likely to report receiving online sexual solicitations. The online risky behaviors included maintaining buddy lists that included strangers, discussing sex online with people they did not know in person and being rude or nasty online.
- Boys who are gay or are questioning their sexuality may be more susceptible to Internet-initiated sex crimes than other populations. Researchers found boys were the victims in nearly one-quarter of criminal cases, and most cases included facts that suggested victims were gay or questioning their sexuality.
Here are Some Statistics from Another Survey:
Research by Cox Communications Inc., in partnership with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children ® (NCMEC) and TV host and children’s advocate John Walsh reveals that more parents are talking to their children about the potential dangers of the Internet. However, many teens remain unconcerned about the risks of sharing personal info on the Internet and nearly two-thirds post photos or videos of themselves on social networks like MySpace and Friendster.
The findings are from the third annual survey Cox and NCMEC have fielded to help parents realize the potential dangers of the Internet. The 2007 survey was nearly identical to the questions asked in 2006, revealing compelling year-over-year trends about teen Internet use.
Many teens are unconcerned about the dangers of sharing personal info online.
- A majority of teens (58%) do not think posting photos or other personal info on social networking sites is unsafe. They should read the news.
- Nearly half of teens (47%) are not worried about others using their personal info in ways they do not want (although that represents a 10-percentage-point improvement over 2006). About half (49%) are unconcerned posting personal info online might negatively affect their future. (Most employers now do a search for their prospective employees. With some of the information and pictures I have found on MySpace, they should be concerned.)
Did you know:
- Most hiring managers and HR departments use search engines to research applicants?
- Men and women Google each other when they first begin dating?
- Colleagues at your company and companies you collaborate with look for information about you on Google and use that information to make judgments upon you?
Teens are increasingly active online and at potential risk of falling prey to online predators.
- A large majority of teens (71%) have established online profiles (including those on social networking sites such as MySpace, Friendster and Xanga), up from 61% in 2006.
- 69% of teens regularly receive personal messages online from people they do not know and most of them do not tell a trusted adult about it.
- Teens readily post personal info online. 64% post photos or videos of themselves, while more than half (58%) post info about where they live. Females are far more likely than male teens to post personal photos or videos of themselves (70% vs. 58%).
- Nearly one in 10 teens (8%) has posted his or her cell phone number online.
- Overall, 19% of teens report they have been harassed or bullied online, and the incidence of online harassment is higher (23%) among 16 and 17 year-olds. Girls are more likely to be harassed or bullied than boys (21% vs. 17%).
Parents and guardians are becoming more involved in monitoring their teens’ Internet use and talking to them about online safety.
- Parental awareness of their teens’ online activities has risen significantly. This year, 25% of teens say their parents know “little” or “nothing” about what they do online, down from 33% last year.
- 41% of teens report their parents talk to them “a lot” about Internet safety (up five points over 2006), and three out of four say their parents have talked to them in the past year about the potential dangers of posting personal info. The level of parental involvement is higher for younger teens and girls, although it has increased across all age groups and both genders.
- Teens whose parents have talked to them “a lot” about Internet safety are more concerned about the risks of sharing personal info online than teens whose parents are less involved. For instance, 65% of those whose parents have not talked to them about online safety post info about where they live, compared to 48% of teens with more involved parents.
- Teens whose parents have talked to them “a lot” about online safety are less likely to consider meeting face to face with someone they met on the Internet (12% vs. 20%).
Teens are showing some signs of making safer, smarter choices online.
- While 16% of teens say they have considered meeting face-to-face with someone they’ve talked to only online, that marks a significant drop compared to the 30% of teens who were considering such a meeting in 2006. In 2007, 8% of teens say they actually have met in person with someone from the Internet, down from 14% in 2006.
- When they receive online messages from someone they do not know, 60% of teens say they usually respond only to ask who the person is. Compared to the 2006 survey, there was a 10-percentage-point increase in teens ignoring such messages (57% vs. 47%). Still, nearly a third of teens (31%) say they usually reply and chat with people they do not know, and only 21% tell a trusted adult when they receive such messages.
Complete survey results, online safety tools and tips, and links to NCMEC and other resources are at www.cox.com
Teen Internet Statistics Summary
A very interesting survey with some eye opening results that parents should consider when kids are left unsupervised on the Internet. Kids are brave and think they are immortal. Some teenagers will not think twice about posting their address, phone number and picture online. They also openly chat with adults.
The study shows that some teens do not care about their future. They do not understand that it is almost impossible to get incriminating information or pictures off the Internet once they are there. Future employers or colleges care. Do you care about their future?
The research also shows that too many teenagers considered meeting someone face to face that they met on the Internet. Another too many teens actually have met face to face with someone they have met online. Would you want to know if your child was going to meet someone they have met on the Internet? A computer monitoring program would alert you to the meeting before it happened, possibly saving your child from an Internet Predator. It is your responsibility to protect your children online, even if they do not want to be protected.
WebWatcher Computer Monitoring Service
WebWatcher is a computer monitoring program that lets you see what your kids are doing online at all times in real time. Just install the program and log into your own personal web portal to see exactly what they are doing on the Internet. As you can see by these Internet statistics, the kids are getting quite web savvy and think that nothing could happen to them chatting with people that they do not know. WebWatcher will let you know exactly what they are doing – quite possibly saving their lives. See more about the WebWatcher service here.