58% teens know how to hide their online activity from parents

Tags: Knowledge
Parents and teens in India are not reading the same page when it comes to being online, according a ‘Secret Lives of Teens’, a survey of done by McAfee.

Teens, who are growing up as ‘digital natives’, contrary to parents’ belief, end up sharing or accessing more information online than required. Indian teens have increasingly active online lives but lack parental assistance, the study said.

It said 20 per cent of the surveyed teens access porn or nudity online willingly several times a day. On the other hand, 32 per cent parents think teens access such content only a few times a year. About 38 per cent of the surveyed teens have witnessed cruel or mean behaviour online but only 16 per cent parents are aware of this.

The study, conducted in Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Pune and Chennai on 757 teenagers and 750 parents, said about 70 per cent the parents polled trusted their teens to tell them everything they do online. On the contrary, 58 per cent teens polled believed they know how to hide their online activities from their parents.

Online behavioural patterns of children need to be seen with lot more gravity and consciousness by Indian parents. Today’s teens are meandering their way through an unrestricted virtual world with disturbing experiences like cyber bullying, befriending unknown strangers, getting into relationships and accessing provocative content,” said Anindita Mishra- McAfee Cybermum India.

Arming kids with information they need and talking openly about the risks involved and how to deal with them is a key agenda of new age parenting, the study said.

Age-appropriate settings, filtering for internet TV, music and online games, enhanced remote device management and an email activity reports protect the children and also meet their information needs.

The surveyed teens spent 86 per cent of their time on Facebook, 54 per cent time on Twitter. About 45 per cent teens accessed internet on smart phones. It said 97 per cent of the teens surveyed had a social networking account. On an average, many open an account at 13.

And, many go online to search answers to a test or an assignment. And parents are aware of this.

krishnamohan@mydigitalfc.com

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