Consumer, Family Safety

Social Networking Is Not For Kids, No Matter What They Say!

By on Jul 20, 2011

When I spotted this news article, I was mildly amused at the jokes about kids being on Facebook. Then I noticed the statistic that 7.5 million kids under 13 are on the social network. WHAT??? That is really scary stuff. This article and study done by Consumer Reports is even more frightening.

They state “Among young users, more than 5 million were 10 and under, and their accounts were largely unsupervised by their parents…Only 18 percent made their child a Facebook friend, which is the best way to monitor the child. By comparison, 62 percent of parents of 13- to 14-year-olds did so. Only 10 percent of parents of kids 10 and under had frank talks about appropriate online behavior and threats.” YIKES!

Folks, if you don’t know, sites like these have an age restriction for a reason. Children need to have the Internet filtered and secured– there is awful, awful stuff out there such as viruses and malware, adult content, online predators and cyber bullying.

Kids under thirteen should not be using the computer unsupervised, uploading videos to YouTube, creating pages on social networks and certainly not have laptops in their room.

Kids under thirteen (and many older than thirteen) are simply not mature enough, nor do they have the skills they need to stay safe online. (Read this post as a reminder of what could happen to your child.) So when they try to tell you that “all of the kids at school are on Facebook”, look them straight in the eye and tell them “I don’t care what the other kids are doing, I care about you!”

Here are a few of my posts to get you started in teaching your kids how to stay safe online. Pick a few that strike a chord in your family to read today.

Latest Tech Gadgets, staying one step ahead of the kids 

Facebook Privacy 

Where are the online predators hanging out?

Online dating, offline assault

Rep. Weiner – Twitter, Lies and lessons for kids

Fluffy bunnies spam is no Easter egg 

Kids are back in school, here are my checklists 

Supreme Court Ruling allows violent video game sales to kids

Netiquette for Teen Parties

Are your kids deleting history?

Stay safe out there!

Follow me @McAfeeCybermom