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Children and online risks: Global statistics

EditorialChildren and online risks: Global statistics

World (Times Of Ocean)- FBI Internet Crime Center has reported crime against children increased by 144% in 2020 compared to 2019 – that’s eight children per day getting abused online.

Increasingly, children are being subjected to cybercrime as it, including phishing and cyberbullying, is becoming very common in our online lives.

From 2014 to 2019, the online crime rate varied by only 5-9%. In total, the FBI received more than $2 million in financial losses from online crime against children from 2015 through 2020.

Six out of 10 children ages 8-12 are exposed to various cyber risks according to a DQ Institute 2020 survey covering 63% of the global population. Cyberbullying is experienced by nearly one in two children and close to one third of children suffer from other cyber threats like phishing and hacking.

Approximately 12 million children in the US are exposed to cyber risks, nine million are victimized by cyberbullying, and six million have experienced cyber threats, according to Surfshark report.

The DQ Institute study found that children’s exposure to cyberbullying and other cyber threats varies by country.

Online risk exposure indicator includes factors such as:

-The frequency of involvement with cyberbullying or cyber-victimization activities.
-The percentage of children and adolescents affected by cyberbullying or cyber threat.
-The number of cyber threats experienced.

Children and online risks: Global statistics
Children and online risks: Global statistics

Countries with low online risk exposure
Children in nations with the least online presence are the least likely to be cyberbullied or fall victim to cyberdangers like phishing or hacking. Children in Japan, for example, are least exposed to various online threats. The same is true in Italy, Spain, Ecuador, and India. These are countries with very low online risk exposure levels.

Countries with high-online risk exposure
On the other hand, Thailand has the highest numbers of cyberbullying and cyber threats in the world, making it a country with a very high exposure to online risks for children. The Philippines and Turkey follow Thailand as the top 3 countries with the highest online risk exposure levels.

Colombian and Mexican children fall victim to cyberbullying or phishing less often, but are also considered to reside in a high-risk country when dealing with the internet.

Countries with the best online risk management practices
Online risk management skills are strongest among children in Asia-Pacific countries (India, Malaysia, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand). Due to children’s ability to handle cyberbullying and its consequences, India tops the list.

Moreover, India’s online safety education programs are 30% stronger than the global average (global score 52/100 versus India’s 68/100). DQ Institute’s score on online safety education represents the percentage of children who are taught online safety education at school and the frequency of that education.

Online safety education programs are even stronger in Malaysia, Australia, and New Zealand than in India (scoring 84, 71, and 75 out of 100, respectively). On a global scale, high- and high-upper-middle-income countries do not necessarily invest more in children’s online safety education than the rest of the world, despite their good economies.

Countries with the worst online risk management practices
Furthermore, Thai children are not only exposed to the most online risks of all analyzed countries, but they also lack the skills to deal with cyberbullying and other cyberthreats. Thailand ranks third from the bottom for children’s online risk management skills level, followed by Nepal and Oman.

Children in Oman (a country with a high income) are frequently exposed to cyberbullying, but do not receive online safety education as one might think.

Saudi Arabia and Uruguay are among the countries with the lowest levels of online safety education, scoring 6.5 and 2 out of 100, respectively. Consequently, it’s not surprising that children in Saudi Arabia and Uruguay are the least prepared to deal with online threats.

Countries’ income level impact on online safety education
The online safety education in low- and lower-middle-income countries is generally better (average score 55/100). The average education level of high- and high-upper-middle-income countries is 51/100.

Role of online safety education
Surfshark says there are few exceptions, such as Japan and South Korea (high scores in online risk management but low scores in online safety education), in which online safety education plays an important role in children’s ability to cope with cyberbullying, phishing, and other cyberthreats.

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