Online Safety

Online+Safety

Emma Bibb

Online Safety is an important asset that needs to be considered for every single person alive. Especially regarding the current generation, Gen-Z. Throughout generations, technology has drastically developed into something great. But it can also be very dangerous. (See below for statistics on online safety). 

Smart Social did a digital safety survey that adults like: parents, educators, law enforcement, etc. could take. The purpose of the survey was to find out the frustrations of the adults regarding the safety of their children and students online. Smart Social asked questions about the ages of the children, the adults biggest concerns, and what apps the children use. Surprisingly the two highest age groups were elementary and middle school children resulting in 47.1% each. The most used apps were YouTube (72.5%), Snapchat (66.7%), and Instagram (60.8). According to CodeCondo, Instagram is the most hacked app on the internet. The adults who took the survey were most concerned about: their child’s online safety, children’s ability to be naive, helping them make wise choices, what it is doing to their brains, what the children are doing behind the adults backs, things stay on the internet forever, cyber-bullying (refer back to bullying article for definition), predators, and many more. As pictured above, these children do not think putting their personal information online is a risk. Again, YouTube, Snapchat, and Instagram all have settings where users can make their posts public to anyone, location on for everyone, etc. Moving in a different direction, Facebook bases it’s entire profile off of your personal information. Before you even get to see your brand new profile and make new friends, they ask you questions like: where you went to high school and college, where you’re from and where you live now, your birthdate, where you work, your relationship status, your hobbies, and more. Back in 2012, Facebook bought Instagram so hackers can easily find your information through both platforms whether you have both or just one. 

In order to stay safe on the internet, here is what you should do: 

  • Limit your personal information. Not everyone should or needs to know where you live and who you’re dating or married to. 
  • Keep privacy settings on and limit who can see your profile. Keep your accounts private. 
  • Practice safety browsing. Do not click on random links people send, do not click on sketchy websites on the internet, and do not click on any random advertisements on some website. 
  • Make sure your Wi-Fi is secure. Use a secure password and use a secure VPN.