A Safer Digital World for Children
“The internet was designed for adults, but it is increasingly used by children and young people - and digital technology increasingly affects their lives and futures. So digital policies, practices, and products should better reflect children's needs, children's perspectives, and children's voices,” said UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake.
The rapid increase in technological developments shows that not only adults but also children are involved in the digital world.
Digital technologies are used for a multitude of activities both in and out of school by children nowadays than ever. From watching television to gaming to chatting to doing research for school projects, young people engage with digital devices for many purposes.
While experts debate understanding social media's impact on children, one study case shows that children who are younger than 11 years old and who use Instagram and Snapchat are more likely to have problematic digital behaviors such as having online-only friends and visiting sites parents would disapprove such as where is a greater risk of taking part in online abusement.
According to UNICEF research and reports indicates that digital technology and being interactive in this world also pose significant risks to children's safety, privacy, and well-being, magnifying threats, and harms that many children already face offline and making already vulnerable children even more vulnerable.
Here are the practical suggestions to help guide more effective policymaking and more responsible business practices to benefit children should include:
- Ensure all children with affordable access to high-quality online resources.
- Preserve children from damaging online - containing abuse, exploitation, trafficking, cyberbullying, and exposure to unsuitable materials.
- Safeguard children's privacy and identities online.
- Teach digital literacy to keep children informed, engaged, and safe online.
- Leverage the power of the private sector to advance ethical standards and practices that protect and benefit children online.
- Put children at the center of digital policy.
In short, a safer digital world for children is possible. With awareness and the good use of technology, it is possible to grow up generations that are safe and full of knowledge, more open to development and growth.
Source Article UNICEF Press Release