The Revolution Will Be Digitalized, Without Being Realized by UK Kids - Report

© Photo : PixabayRobot children
Robot children - Sputnik International
The insecurity of the Internet has been laid bare in Britain in a new report, warning that 50 percent of all 8 to 11-year-olds are signing away their privacy rights to social media sites, without realizing it.

The report, Growing Up Digital, published by the UK's Children's Commissioner, suggests that the UK government isn't doing enough to help young people navigate the digital landscape.

​"With one study showing that almost a third of 15 year olds admit to having sent a naked photo of themselves at least once and over a third of 12-15's having seen hateful content directed at a particular group of people in the last year, this is not hyperbole," the report states. 

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The report concludes that many kids are being left to "fend for themselves" when it comes to online safety and protection from cyberbullies and online predators, while parents who bury their heads in the sand "vainly hope for the best."

Anne Longfield, the UK's Children's Commissioner is calling for new laws to protect children online.

The Children's Commissioner wants the government to intervene and better prepare youngsters in Britain for their digital upbringing, ​"the Internet is an extraordinary force for good but it is not designed with children in mind," the report states.

These include creating a compulsory digital citizenship program, simpler terms and conditions for children to understand when signing up to social media sites and a new children's digital ombudsman to mediate between youngsters and tech firms. 

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"With a mismatch of knowledge, fears and expectations between parents and their children, and with technology developing at such a tremendous pace, children must be equipped from an early age to engage safely and resiliently with the Internet," the report states.

Concerns have been raised that children do not fully understand the basic principle that in order to access many apps, they wave goodbye to their fundamental privacy rights; have the potential to be tracked by an app; their terms and conditions changed without any notice; and that their personal data bought and sold. 

The Children's Commissioner is also calling for the UK to adopt new laws including a search engine's 'Right to Remove' facility that applies to European Union citizens — remains available to children in the UK — post Brexit. 

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