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Online Safety Index for Parents


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Online Safety Index for Parents

  1. 1. BE a PRO Parent TM BE a PRO Parent Safety Index Report 2013 TM Sponsored by: 1 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  2. 2. BE a PRO Parent Executive Summary In 2013, the Internet Keep Safe Coalition (iKeepSafe) assessed American families’ competence and attitudes surrounding all six known online safety risks experienced by K-12th-grade children. Close to 3,700 parents nationwide participated in the online survey. All respondents were at least 18 years or older and had at least one child under the age of 18 living with them. TM THIS IS THE FIRST TIME: all six areas of known—not perceived—online safety risks have been studied and surveyed. The objective of the research was twofold: 1. To better grasp parents’ understanding of and relationships with connected technology as both relate to keeping their families safe online 2. To further fine-tune iKeepSafe BEaPRO™ apps and related resources with qualitative and quantitative analysis and data Knowing that 74%* of teens turn to their moms and dads for digital citizenship guidance, we have created iKeepSafe BEaPRO™ Parent online safety apps to help parents maintain the success of their children’s academic, professional, and financial futures. Never before has an online safety app been backed by such extensive research and collaboration with nationally recognized internet security, online safety, legal, education, and mental health experts. * Family Online Institute The Online Generation Gap: Contrasting attitude of parents and teens 2 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  3. 3. BE a PRO Parent TM Background Story The story of iKeepSafe BEaPRO™ starts in 2008, when the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) surveyed 40,000 New York-based students on their internet usage. A report was created from those findings, highlighting the leading digital offences committed by K-12th-grade children. Hospital to translate these known online safety risks into technology-positive core competencies.” With their help, we created the iKeepSafe BEaPRO™ Parent Safety Index based on what is now known as iKeepSafe’s Six Pillars of Digital Citizenship and Wellness: With the help from nationally recognized thought leaders, iKeepSafe used RIT’s research to create the first-ever framework around all known—not perceived—online safety risks affecting kids today. Investigators, prosecutors and defense attorneys helped us identify and categorize new media-related criminal and civil cases found in the court system. Internet security, digital literacy, education, and mental health experts contributed credible, academic research and best practices to our efforts. Pillar 1: Balance Pillar 2: Ethics a Pillar 3: Privacy Pillar 4: Relationships Pillar 5: Reputation Pillar 6: Online Security iKeepSafe BEaPRO™ Parent teaches adults essential technology skills and habits, how to model technology-positive behavior, and how to quickly get their children up to speed. Finally, we partnered with the Center on Media and Child Health at Boston Children’s 3 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  4. 4. BE a PRO Parent TM RESEARCH PROVES: Youth online behavior impacts how they feel about themselves; the quality of their relationships; and, their future academic, professional, and financial successes. Introduction When it comes to their children’s online safety, moms and dads often don’t know what they need to know, and they don’t know where to start looking for answers. iKeepSafe recognizes this gap in knowledge and the need for guidance. Our Online Safety Index report identifies the six core competencies—The Six Pillars of Digital Citizenship and Wellness—that lead to youth success in our digitally connected culture. It casts light on the areas in which parents feel either confident or uniformed. Studies show that kids turn to their parents 4 for advice and information when they have online safety questions. Sometimes parents need answers themselves, as well as practical next steps, in their quest to smoothly integrate digital citizenship into their households. The case for creating dynamic online safety resources that are easily accessible, current, and backed by experts can’t be ignored. iKeepSafe pledges to use this research and more like it as we continue our mission to bring online safety to the whole family, the whole world over. iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  5. 5. Pillar 1 Balance KEY FINDINGS Many parents say they put limits on the types of online activities their children take part in. When it comes to making household rules around striking a balance between time spent on and offline, parents indicate the following: BE a PRO Parent TM »» Of the remaining parents in the study, 26% said they’ve made this devicecharging rule but don’t steadily carry it out, and 39% have never created a rule of this kind before. OVERALL FINDINGS BALANCE TRENDS Moms and dads are setting rules around limiting the use of electronic media in their child’s bedroom (69%). »» Of the 69% of parents who have set balance limits, 48% say the rule is set in place and enforced, while 21% say they have made the rule but do not follow up consistently. Families are starting to make choices about when to be and when not to be reachable rather than always being “wired” (61%). »» Of the 61% of parents who are setting balance rules, 35% have made the rule and make sure that it’s followed, whereas 26% have put the rule in place but don’t implement it on a daily basis AREA OF CONCERN Families could enjoy a few more Z’s if they set and enforced rules around charging devices where they can’t interrupt sleep: only 36% of families do this. 5 Largely, parents promote on and offline balance by setting rules around the types of digital activities their children can participate in (77%). Many households designate the dinner table as a “media-free” zone, with 50% of parents enforcing this rule daily and 22% having good intentions but not always sticking to their guns. Despite some inconsistency with mediafree family time, parents assure us that they value real-life interactions over digital activities. Only 23% of families lack rules that prioritize “old-fashioned” face time over online contact. BALANCE: 67% of parents believe their family uses digital media in the proper balance. iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  6. 6. BE a PRO Parent TM The remaining households regularly enforce these unplugged habits (50%) or have at least created rules in the past to encourage greater offline interactions (27%). The ground gets slightly shaky once time and location become a factor in media consumption. Moms and dads consistently reinforce rules that limit the amount of time their kids spend each day with their electronic devices (44%) and those times during the day when they can use their devices or watch TV (42%). Respectively, 28% and 26% of surveyed parents have made the move to carry out these rules but aren’t quite there yet. Those children using connected technologies are encouraged to focus on one task at a time (37% enforce this rule, while 29% have the made the rule but don’t follow up.) An overwhelming number of families (66%) don’t have rules against using smartphones or cellphones as alarm clocks – or engaging in screen time in the last hour before bed (57%). 6 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  7. 7. Pillar 2 Ethics BE a PRO Parent TM KEY FINDINGS Parents feel strongly about how their children behave online. When it comes to teaching their kids the ethical usage of digital media and devices, they say the following: ETHICAL TRENDS Parents are talking to their children about avoiding piracy and stealing of any kind online (67%). »» Of the 67% of parents who have spoken to their children about ethical digital usage, 48% have done so within the past year, while 19% have had the conversation more than a year ago. Parents are talking to their children about how to respect themselves and others online (75%). »» Of the 75% of parents who have talked to their children about their online conduct, 58% of parents have made this a topic of conversation within the last year versus 17% who have brought it up more than twelve months ago. AREA OF CONCERN Almost half of the parents surveyed haven’t taught their kids how to respond if they see bullying or harassment online (49%). 33% have talked to their children about identifying and responding to cyberbullying incidents during the past year and 19% have discussed these issues more than a year ago. ETHICS: 85% of parents feel their household is ethical in its digital media usage. OVERALL FINDINGS Parents know that they have to open the dialogue around the expectations and limitations they place on their children’s online behavior (78%). They drill down even further by determining what their kids can create and share online (74%). Conversations emphasizing the importance of avoiding piracy or any other type of online stealing are taking place but not quite to the degree of the aforementioned discussions. Adults focus on plagiarism, teaching their kids and teens that sources of information and ideas should always be acknowledged (45% have done this in the past year; 19% »» Of the remaining parents in the survey, 7 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  8. 8. BE a PRO Parent TM have done the same at least a year or longer ago). Moms and dads have talked about piracy with their children this year (48%) and the remainder visited the subject more than a year ago (19%). Things start to get tricky when it comes to following up on where kids and teens go online. Close to half of surveyed parents don’t use parental controls to filter, block, or track their children’s digital steps (44%). And 56% of parents admit that they don’t check the web browser history after kids use the computer. 8 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  9. 9. Pillar 3 Privacy KEY FINDINGS Privacy is a topic of concern that motivates parents to head cyber crooks and bullies off at the pass. When it comes to protecting their families’ data, they share the following: BE a PRO Parent TM 50% have discussed app safety with their kids over the last twelve months, whereas 17% haven’t mentioned this issue in more than a year. OVERALL FINDINGS Eight in ten parents have adjusted and changed their social networking privacy settings: (81%). It’s not surprising that parents are huge on privacy. They know that concealing their children’s valuable data is the key to keeping their reputations, happiness, and future success in tact. »» Of the 81% of parents who have updated their social network setting, 60% have done so in the past year, while 21% have made the adjustment more than a year ago. Conversations are started with what can arguably be the foundation of privacy: passwords. PRIVACY TRENDS Parents are turning off geolocation features on phone and the web (75%). »» Of the 75% of parents who are shutting off features that tell apps and websites where they are, 57% have “gone dark” during this past year and 18% took steps to hide their locations the year before or earlier. AREA OF CONCERN One in three parents don’t talk to their children about how the apps they download can impact their privacy (34%). »» Of the remaining parents in the study, 9 Moms and dads teach their kids that they should never share their login credentials with anyone other than their parents (76%). They also remind their young ones that they shouldn’t divulge personal information (e.g., birth date, address, phone number) to others online (77%). The irrevocable nature of posted content isn’t lost on parents who remind their kids that once texts are sent or information is shared across the web, there’s no getting it back (73%). Appropriate posting, in general, is a hot topic and 74% of parents attempt to teach their children what should and should not be published online. iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  10. 10. BE a PRO Parent TM Some parents go beyond conversation and monitor their kids’ screen names to confirm they’re not sharing private information via their online handles (76%). Yet, slightly fewer moms and dads go as far as to read comments and other posts they’re children have made and that have been sent to them (67%). Fewer still, the number of parents who have reviewed their children’s online friends list—38% of parents admitted to have never taken this step. Rather than taking a monitoring approach, adults instead encourage their kids and teens to come to them if they feel threatened by something they’ve encountered online (76%). PRIVACY: 80% of parents feel their family is careful in protecting their online privacy. While privacy is an important topic in American households, some parents struggle with keeping up with related online policies. Only 50% of surveyed parents within the year have learned the privacy policies published by the sites their children visit, while it’s been more than a year for 21%. 10 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  11. 11. Pillar 4 Reputation BE a PRO Parent TM KEY FINDINGS Parents are teaching their families how to protect their reputations. When it comes to managing personal information online, they claim the following: REPUTATION TRENDS They are starting to manage personal information that’s available online (84%). »» Of the 84% of parents who have taken steps to oversee their public data, 63% have reported doing so in the last twelve months, while 21% haven’t engaged in this activity in over a year. The majority are teaching their children the importance of not sharing private information about themselves, their family members, and their friends online (77%). »» Of the 77% of parents who have spoken to their kids about keeping personal data private, 59% have discussed this subject within the year and 18% haven’t brought it in the last twelve months. AREA OF CONCERN Few families are searching their identities across search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing: only 36% of families have done this within the past year. 21% haven’t “googled” themselves within a year, while 43% have never engaged in a self-search before. REPUTATION: 80% of parents say their family is careful in protecting its online reputation. OVERALL FINDINGS Moms and dads talk about onlinereputation protection with their families (71%). They’re teaching their kids and teens how to post positive material that will attract college recruiters and employers (66%). And they’re actively protecting their children’s reputations (49% within the year, 21% more than a year ago), going so far as to edit or delete information that may possibly harm them (57%). Adults are doubling efforts by educating their young ones on the permanence of online content—once information is shared it can be manipulated, shared, and stored by someone else (74%). »» Of the remaining parents in the study, 11 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  12. 12. BE a PRO Parent TM Reputation management extends beyond the family, though. Many children are learning they should report inappropriate content to protect others’ online reputations, with only 23% of parents never having had this discussion with their families. As far as their children’s inappropriate content is concerned—specifically their email handles—only 40% of parents have made their kids and teens replace immature or unsuitable email addresses. Oversharing is a popular topic across the web, and most parents are aware of the consequences stemming from sharing sensitive information online. When it comes to their kids’ health issues, 76% of adults feel they carefully share information (i.e., 60% have done this within the year and 16% more than a year ago). 12 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  13. 13. BE a PRO Parent Pillar 5 Relationships KEY FINDINGS While the majority of parents are deeply concerned with how they behave online, they don’t necessarily attribute better friendships to the types of online connections they make. When it comes to engaging respectfully on the internet, moms and dads state the following: TM »» Of the remaining parents in the study, 15% strongly agree that their kids’ friendships benefit from their online connections, while a larger number (39%) simply agree. OVERALL FINDINGS RELATIONSHIP TRENDS They are teaching children not to say anything online that they wouldn’t say in person (84%). »» Of the 84% of adults who have taught their kids not to “hide” behind a keyboard, 48% and 36% strongly agree and agree respectively that this is the correct code of online conduct. Family members are using social media and cell phones to enhance healthy relationships (86%). »» Of the 86% of family members who positively use social networking and mobile phones, 30% strongly agree that these communication methods improve their friendships, while 56% agree. AREA OF CONCERN Close to half of surveyed parents don’t believe that their children’s online connections improve their friendships (46%). 13 Overwhelmingly, parents strongly agree that they respectfully post about others online (62% strongly agree, 34% agree). Cyberbullying and harassment are critical talking points for parents (74%). But many adults feel their children would know what to do if a friend pestered them online (78%). Of those parents, 28% strongly agree that they have a plan of action in place if their kids feel hurt by something that has been posted online about them (vs. 41% who agree that this is the case for their households). RELATIONSHIPS: 51% of parents feel that social media has enhanced their relationships. iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  14. 14. BE a PRO Parent TM Moving the discussion beyond their family’s obligation to report inappropriate online posts, adults are teaching their children how to actually flag and inform the powers that be of this unsuitable content (62%). And 61% of moms and dads extend this instruction to situations where harassment comes into play. Regarding healthy friendships, parents don’t fully draw a connection between their online and offline relationships. Only 22% of parents believe their families’ online interactions with each other enhance their overall relationships as a unit, while 31% disagree with this statement. Even fewer parents, 20%, strongly agree that their friendships outside of the family are bettered through the online connections they make (39% disagree). 14 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  15. 15. Pillar 6 Online Security BE a PRO Parent TM KEY FINDINGS Adults feel confident in the steps they take to mitigate risks on the internet. In terms of behaving securely online, they say the following: ONLINE SECURITY TRENDS Most parents specifically look for the “https” before carrying out financial transactions (78%). »» Of the 78% of parents who know that “https” signifies secure communication over a computer network, 61% have looked for this indicator in the past year, while 17% have done the same but at least a year earlier. Almost all families are password protecting their wireless networks (90%). »» Of the families that are password protecting their Wi-Fi networks, 71% have done this at some point over the past year and 19% have done the same a year ago or more. AREA OF CONCERN Parents know how to create strong login credentials but few are teaching their children how to do it. Specifically, 93% of parents have created strong passwords (i.e., they include a mix of lower and uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols), but less 15 than half of these same parents have helped their children create strong passwords (44% within the last year). »» Of the remaining parents in the study, 7% have never created passwords that include a mix of lower and uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols. And 36% of adults have never helped their kids create strong login credentials. OVERALL FINDINGS Much like Pillar 4 Reputation, Pillar 6 Online Security ranks high in terms of confidence felt by parents. Most adults have conducted financial transactions within the last year on sites that they know are reputable (79%). Moms and dads feel they know their way around PC security as well, with 76% in the last year choosing to keep their software current through automatic updates. Other parents know to employ additional safety measures like turning off their computers when not using them (87%) and installing antivirus and malware protection on their computers and mobile devices (91%). Wireless networks get ample attention, too, as 90% of surveyed adults say they use network keys to protect themselves from iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  16. 16. BE a PRO Parent TM Wi-Fi leeches and 81% use router passwords. Once they’ve stepped outside their homes, parents continue to take measures to protect themselves on public hotspots (83%). Identity theft is top of mind for parents and 61% have educated themselves within the last year (29% a year ago or more) on how to protect their personal details from cybercriminals. The majority of adults share this information with their children, with the remaining 39% never sharing what they know about guarding private data. ONLINE SECURITY: 71% of parents feel their family has done all it should to protect their online security. One area that needs improvement— perhaps not surprisingly—is the recycling of passwords across multiple sites. In all, 35% of parents have never done this; however, 26% reused their password at least a year or so ago and 39% have done so as recently as this year. 16 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  17. 17. BE a PRO Parent TM Methodology The iKeepSafe BEaPRO™ Parent Safety Index report is a research project focused on parents. All respondents were age 18-years or older and had at least one child under the age of 18 living in their household. The questionnaire was designed by and in close consultation with iKeepSafe. Crux Research programmed, hosted and tabulated the study. Respondents were drawn from the Research Now panel. »» In total, 3,685 parents took part in the study. »» 2,945 respondents (80%) were white, with the remaining being non-white. »» 1,843 respondents were male; 1,842 respondents were female. »» 1,230 respondents were aged 18-34; 1,227 respondents were aged 35-49; 1,228 respondents were aged 50+. »» 1,414 respondents were parents of boys; 1,200 were parents of girls; 1,071 were parents of both boys and girls. »» The study data was balanced to equally represent the age groups and genders. »» The questionnaire was available in Spanish as well as English. 45 respondents took the Spanish version. »» The questionnaire averaged 9.3 minutes. »» The study was completed from May 22- 26, 2013. 17 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  18. 18. BE a PRO Parent TM iKeepSafe BEaPRO Parent TM The Online Safety App That Helps the Whole Family iKeepSafe BEaPRO™ Parent online safety app educates and empowers adults to protect their kids across all connected devices: »» First, the app assesses users’ households, highlighting where gaps in technology behaviors and attitudes exist. »» Next, it offers expert online safety advice and resources that are tailored to address each parent’s specific situation. »» Finally, the app explains how to pass this education down to their children to improve overall technology health and safety. Keep your kids happy, healthy, and safe online—visit our BEaPROTM Parent online safety app on Facebook: join us here. Or, access BEaPROTM Parent advice no matter where you are—download the app for Android: download here. 18 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013
  19. 19. BE a PRO Parent TM Who Is iKeepSafe? iKeepSafe, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is a broad partnership of globally recognized internet safety experts and thought leaders who work together to keep kids safe across digital devices. The coalition provides innovative resources, including parent tutorials and educational materials. iKeepSafe uses its unique partnerships to share safety resources with families worldwide. 19 iKeepSafe BEaPROTM Parent Safety Index Report 2013