Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Making the Internet Safe for Kids

Experts proposed several ways to "lock down" the Web to keep kids safe, after two major studies have revealed that it's far too easy for kids to gain access to parts of the Internet that may be dangerous or simply inappropriate for them.

The ideas included using credit card numbers for log-ins, rather than merely entering a year of birth, or even a worldwide "Internet pass."

“No one is taking the responsibility to [to do age verification for kids],” Dr. Cindy Bunin, a family therapist, told FoxNews.com. Some argue the need for more laws. Bunin and others argue that it’s the responsibility of parents and the owners of social media sites to monitor usage.

That may be a problem.

One of those recent studies pointed to growing leniency among parents about what kids do online. A recent Consumer Reports survey found that 7.5 million kids are using Facebook, violating the company's age restrictions -- and in most cases, parents helped their child create an account.

Another survey of 1,000 adults by the Liberty Mutual's Responsibility Project found that parents are helping their kids access social networks, despite age restrictions for those under 13.

Yet, many parents are unaware of the dangers.

4 Biggest Targets for Identity Theft

Identity theft is a growing threat throughout the world. Thieves continue to create more advanced, sophisticated and unpredictable methods to steal valuable personal information. In 2012 alone, 16.6 million Americans were victims of identity theft. The risk is real, and everyone is a target.

Internet Safety

Here are some examples of victims:

1. People Aged 18 to 24

Young adults ages 18 to 24 are one of the groups most susceptible to identity theft. In fact, in 2006, 29 percent of identity thefts reports came from young adults. Young people who use credit cards for the first time are at increased risk because they may not understand how to protect their information adequately.

2. Those Making over $75,000

Fraudsters target people with high income levels. In fact, 10 percent of this group falls victim to some form of identity theft each year. Criminals specifically target people with high incomes because a successful identify theft attempt is likely to be much more lucrative.

3. People with Weak Passwords

Passwords are designed to protect important identification and financial information online. Weak passwords, like "password" and "123456789," can be cracked easily and are the root cause of many identity theft cases.

4. Young Children

Child identity theft is increasing. Some reports note that it happens to roughly 150,000 kids per year. Child identity theft is possible because children have Social Security numbers for tax purposes, as parents usually list them as dependents on tax returns.

Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/simple-thrifty-living/4-biggest-targets-for-ide_b_6856458.html