Most US adults think Internet is dangerous for children



September 30th, 2005

ZDNet is reporting on a survey carried out for Zone Labs (the makers of Zone Alarm) which shows that most US adults (94% of 2,322 men and women, for those of you who like numbers) think that the internet is a dangerous place for children.

At the top of the list is predators in chat rooms (61%) with pornographic websites second (16%) with phishing, spyware and viruses also making the list.

Parents are right to be concerned about the dangers posed by the internet - it's a conduit into your home and to your children that can be abused by people who you otherwise wouldn't allow past the door. Just in the same way that you lock your doors, guarding who is allowed to communicate with your family over the internet is just as important.

I'm glad to see that Zone Labs isn't using this survey as fuel to push a new product. In fact, they are open about the fact that technology isn't the answer, instead good parenting is the first and best line of defense.

Zone Labs have a a free guide called "How to Protect your Family Online" on safe.zonelabs.com that parents can download. It contains some very sensible advice, such as having the internet-connected PC in the family room rather than in a bedroom or behind a closed door. Internet and chat room behaviour is going to be very different in full view of everyone else than it is going to be locked away in a room. It also highlights other possible dangers that face kids from the increasing popularity of cell phones.

I think though that while "stranger danger" is indeed real, it's not the only source of dangers and parents also need to keep an eye out for non-strangers too.

Stay safe out there and keep your family safe too!

This entry was posted on Friday, September 30th, 2005 at 21:54 and is filed under In the News, Stay Secure. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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