According to a study by cybersecurity firm Surfshark, 6 out of 10 children aged 8 to 12 are at risk online. The report notes that the number of cybercrimes against children is rising sharply every year, with distance education suddenly and it soared 144% in 2020. One in two kids face cyberbullying, and about one third face phishing or hacking. In the United States, approximately 12 million children have been exposed to online risks in the past three years. The report suggests that educating children about internet safety can prevent these negative consequences. According to the report, children in Asia-Pacific countries have better online risk management skills than children in high-income countries.

According to a recent study by cybersecurity firm Surfshark, 6 out of 10 children aged 8 to 12 are at risk online. Additionally, one in two children experience cyberbullying, and nearly one-third face cyber threats such as phishing or hacking. The number of cybercrimes against children is by 5% to 9% annually. But in 2020, with the popularity of distance learning, it increased by 144%, and the economic cost of cybercrime against children reached USD 660,000 (approximately Rs 50,313,400), a decrease of 32% year-on-year.

According to the report, over the past three years, approximately 12 million children in the United States have been at risk online, 9 million have been affected by cyberbullying, and 6 million have faced cyber threats. Children in Thailand, the Philippines and Turkey have the highest levels of online risk exposure, while countries such as Japan, Italy and Spain have the lowest levels of online risk exposure. Malaysia, India and Japan are the top countries able to manage online threats.

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The study shows that online safety education can help children cope with cyberbullying and deal with the risk of phishing and other online threats. High-income countries such as Saudi Arabia and Uruguay lack basic internet safety education for children. By contrast, children in Asia-Pacific countries – India, Malaysia, Japan, Australia and New Zealand – have good online risk management skills for children.

The study shows that online safety education programs in India are 30% higher than the global average. Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand have even better online safety education programs than India.


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