New Delhi, India, November 10, 2014: A survey done by Uninor in schools across seven states in India indicates that 30 per cent of Indian children accessing Internet have experienced some kind of cyber harm. This includes cyber bullying, cyber stalking, hacking and defamation.
The survey reveals that 34 per cent of children rarely speak to their parents about their online activities. Researching for school and project work, social networking, downloading music and movies rank highest in the list of online activities of children.
The survey was done across 29 schools and covered nearly 10,500 children. Based on the findings of the survey Uninor has initiated the WebWise program with the objective to build resilience amongst children against Internet related risks. Through WebWise, Uninor has committed to make our young customers safe online. It aims to create awareness on Internet safety for children and familiarize them with habits that can give them a safe online experience.
“At Uninor, we firmly believe that our new users should be equipped not just with the means to access the Internet but with the right information and support system to be able to navigate the digital world safely,” said Morten Karlsen Sorby, CEO of Uninor.
“WebWise is an initiative with an objective of equipping children with knowledge and tools to protect themselves online. Uninor as a responsible corporate entity has taken first step towards making the children web-wise,” Morten added.
As part of the WebWise program, Uninor is conducting workshops on safe Internet for school children. The use of live examples, interactive sessions, small skits and entertaining videos ensured that the children would relate to the issue and identify the need for safe Internet use. Aspects like dealing with cyber bullying/stalking, use of safer passwords, the operating cyber laws, and stronger privacy settings were discussed and elaborated upon.
Since March, 15000 children have been covered under this program. With its commitment to provide safe online experience to its customers, Uninor plans to extend this program further and cover additional 20,000 children by January next year.
Earlier in 2013, A Telenor Group-Boston Consulting Group study had revealed that 134 million Indian children would be active on the Internet by 2017, up from 39.5 million in 2012. This study was done in 12 countries and had showed that Indian children face the worst risk combination of high access and low resilience.
“The survey is an eye opener on the vulnerability of our children while they are using the Internet. One learning is to avoid discouraging the child from using phone but to monitor their activity and have rules that keep their use in limits and create awareness on principles of online activity like safe passwords or not to provide personal information to anyone online or to stay away from unknown people on the net,” said Pooja Thakran, corporate responsibility head, Uninor.
Apart from workshops and increasing school participation, Uninor is planning to take forward the WebWise programme through an active web portal, social initiatives and a child helpline in the next phase starting in 2015.