SingaporeMotherhood | Parenting

November 2015

Cyber Security And Your Children

Did you know that Singapore has one of the highest mobile broadband penetration rates in the region? At the heart of this are our children, who are often more tech savvy than their parents. In an era where technology is evolving quickly, some parents are left baffled by the prospect of keeping their kids safe in the potentially dangerous digital world.


With the aim of comprehending the cyber landscape and ensuring the cyber safety of our highly digital youth, Intel Security has conducted in Singapore the “Teens and The Screen Study 2015”. The study scrutinises the online behaviour and habits of children aged 8 to 16 here, as well as their parents views on the topic. It highlights the behavioural opinion of young Singaporeans towards online activities such as social media usage, cyber safety and cyber-bullying. It also discusses the steps parents must take in order to keep their kids cyber-safe.


Findings of The Study

  • 48% of parents surveyed are comfortable with their children being friends with adults on social media
  • 97% of parents approve if the person is a relative or someone they know, and 78% would permit their children to be friends with a teacher
  • One in three of those active on social media have bullied others, with 26% having done so in retaliation to the person being mean to them
  • 23% of teens and children know the passwords of other people
  • 61% of youth shared that the number of ‘likes’ or ‘favourites’ they receive on a social media post matter to them

Of the parents surveyed, about 69% follow or are connected with their children, in the hopes of gaining access to their interactions with followers and friends. On the other hand, 61% of the children would hide some or all of their online activity from their parents, with 59% claiming they would change their online behaviour when they knew their parents were watching.

However parents and children do agree on one aspect – when it comes to online activities, the worst thing that can happen is a stranger discovering a child’s whereabouts and personal information. This is a major concern for 61% of parents and 49% of children.


“Parents should regularly and openly discuss online behaviour with their children, including the associated risks alongside the benefits they enjoy from such activities,” said David Freer, Vice President, Consumer APAC at Intel Security. “An open dialogue between parents and children along with the right tools empowering parents to protect their family online can go a long way.”

“Children today are accustomed to the Internet and gravitate towards the use of gadgets,” said parent and blogger Edmund Tay. “Parents can ensure their children do not spend too much time online by getting to know their interests online and offline, and encourage the participation of common activities together.”


5 Cyber Parenting Tips for Online Safety

1. Connect With Your Kids

Engage them frequently about online risks, and make sure the communication lines are open. Foster discussions around relevant news stories or cases at schools.

2. Set Password Rules

In order to display camaraderie and trust, teens may share their social media passwords with friends or acquaintances. Friend or not, this is a dangerous practice. Explain to your child the consequence of this practice so that they can understand why their passwords need to remain private.

3. Use Application Reviews

By reading application flags, age restrictions (ranks include: everyone, low maturity, medium maturity, or high maturity) and customer reviews on an application, you will be able to discern if it is going to be suitable for your child or not.

4. Gain Access

Parents should know the passwords to their children’s social media accounts and pass codes to their children’s devices to have full access.

5. Up Your Tech Knowledge

Stay one step ahead and take the time to research the various devices your kids use. Stay knowledgeable about the newest and latest social networks. While you don’t have to create an account, it is important to understand how they work and if your kids are on them.


Intel Security commissioned MSI International to conduct the online survey among 8,026 children and teens ages 8 to 16 and 9,017 parents worldwide. The survey was conducted in United States, Canada, Brazil, UK, Germany, France, Spain, Japan, Australia, Singapore and India. In Singapore, 1,002 participants filled the online survey (501 parents and 501 children aged 8 – 16).

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Cyber Security And Your Children