Tuesday, February 7, 2012 is Safer Internet Day (SID).  It’s an international event organized to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially amongst the younger generation. We have so many netizens who are unaware of the dangers in the new Internet age.  The only solution is constant and consistent education.

Some of the statistics provided  on the website are telling:

  • 26 per cent of children report having a public social networking profile.
  • Children of all ages are lacking digital skills –confidence is often not matched by skill!
  • 12 per cent of European 9-16 year olds say they have been bothered or upset by something on the internet…
  • …however, 56 per cent of parents whose child has received nasty or hurtful messages online are not aware of this.
  • One in eight parents don’t seem to mediate their children’s online activities…
  • …while 56 per cent of parents take positive steps such as suggesting to their children how to behave towards others online.
  • 44 per cent of children think that parental mediation limits what they do online, 11 per cent say it limits their activities a lot.

One aspect that I find fascinating is that this is a global problem.  Kids worldwide are encountering the same problems that we see here in the United States.  Wesites like SaferInternetDay.org and StaySafeOnline.org provide a large amount of useful information to help folks be secure online.  It’s all free and readily available for anyone who wants it.

It’s great to see a worldwide effort like this. I just wonder how we can better spread the word and educate not only our kids, but everyone.