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Jun 26, 2018 8:30 AM CET

New study: Engagement for the internet leads to confident parents and kids that feel safer

Tele2's annual survey, “Children and the Internet”, shows that more than half of all Swedish children have seen something they thought was scary on the internet, and many have been contacted by unknown adults. Children with parents who show an interest in their internet usage are more likely to talk to someone if they experience something frightening.

For the second consecutive year, Tele2 presents the survey "Children and the Internet", featuring internet habits of children, 9-14 years old. This year, the survey is complemented with answers from parents of children in the same age, and it is clear that many worry about what their kids are experiencing on the internet. At the same time, the study shows that 6 out of 10 children who have seen something frightening have been exposed to it through someone else, while only 14 percent have looked it up themselves.

"Many parents worry about what their children do online and almost a third feel that they are not involved. It also can be difficult to protect kids from frightening experiences when content is often spread through friends – at the school yard or through shared content in social media", says Viktor Wallström, EVP Group Communications, at Tele2.

One in five children has been contacted by unknown adults online and nearly one per school class has been asked to meet up with an unknown adult. Young girls are more active in social media and more often subject to contact attempts. At the same time, fewer girls than boys have rules for internet usage at home.

The survey shows that children in homes with established rules for internet usage more often speak with an adult when they encounter something frightening online. However, 4 out of 10 children have no rules for internet usage at home, and many of those children do not talk to anyone if they see encounter something frightening or unpleasant.

"It is important to set rules, regardless of whether your children are girls or boys. The youngest kids tend to use the internet in a more protected and safe way, but that changes rapidly in higher ages. Therefore, try to be enthusiastic and talk to your kids about their experiences online as early as possible. You will feel more confident and make your children feel safer," says Viktor Wallström.

Tele2 takes responsibility
Tele2 contributes to a safer internet by actively blocking sites that contain sexual abuse of children. Based on authorities like Interpol, about half a million pages are blocked each month.

"Tele2 strongly believes in the connected life, but we also see that there are negative aspects that should not be ignored. Our children must be protected from the dark forces that exist online and the study gives us more insights how we can contribute as parents and adults. At Tele2 we are constantly trying to develop new tools to protect children who use our services, but the study also shows that the best thing you can do is to get engaged and show enthusiasm for your children’s’ life online," concludes Viktor Wallström.

For more information and a summary of the study, feel free to visit Tele2’s Child Protection site.

Tele2’s advice to parents

  • Show engagement and enthusiasm for your children’s life online.
  • Discuss with your children and agree together on what should be allowed to do online.
  • Both girls and boys need the same support.

Facts about “Children and the internet”
The report is based on a survey conducted by Novus on behalf of Tele2. In Sweden, 1249 children aged 9-14, and 212 parents of children of the same age, participated in Novus representative and randomly recruited web panel (named “Sverigepanelen”). The survey was conducted between April 23 and May 3, 2018. Feel free to contact us for the full report.

For more information, please contact:
Joel Ibson, Head of Public Relations, Tele2 AB, Phone: +46 766 26 44 00
Erik Strandin Pers, Head of Investor Relations, Tele2 AB, Phone: +46 733 41 41 88

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