More than one in five young people aged 11 to 16 are sharing personal details with strangers online, according to research commissioned by the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP).
The research was based on a survey conducted among 1,700 11- to 16-year-olds in the UK. It shows that more than 20 per cent of respondents have shared details such as their full name, where they go to school and photos of themselves, with people they only know online.
Professor Julia Davidson of Kingston University, who led the study, also found that one in five children have been bullied or threatened via the internet.
“A significant proportion of teenagers engage in behaviour that adults would consider risky, such as posting personal information and photos of themselves,” she said. “This is often viewed as acceptable by young people. We need to better understand teenagers’ online behaviour in order to develop more effective policy and safety practices.”
The study examined young people’s knowledge of internet safety and the impact of internet safety training including CEOP’s ThinkUKnow campaign. The campaign provides information, advice and teaching resources to help children and young people stay safe online.