These days, Canadians of all ages can be found online. This shouldn't come as a surprise. In January 2013, the Canadian Internet Registration Authority revealed that not only do 80 per cent of Canadians go online regularly, but we also spend the most time online in the world, with an average of 45 hours on the Internet per person per month.
Some parents might have noticed that their little ones are asking for computer time with more and more frequency. While keeping kids safe when on the Internet is paramount and should be an important conversation in every household, the Web is a welcome spot for people of all ages now.
There's so much for children to do online, from videochatting with far-away family members to watching their favourite shows. Canadian parents should be prepared to not only vet these websites themselves but also educate their kids in safety tips, because little ones are turning to the Internet for a variety of reasons with more frequency now than ever before.
Kids becoming more tech-savvy on the Internet
Net News Ledger said that police officers in Canada have noticed that more children are going online than in the past. Inspector Scott Naylor, of the Ontario Provincial Police, explained to the news source that this is likely because it is so easy for them to access in the Internet. They can connect using a number of different devices, from video game consoles to tablets.
The latest information from Screen Smart revealed that 94 per cent of Canadian children between grades 4 and 11 go online at home, while 85 per cent can easily access the Internet outside of the house as well.
Law enforcement looking to regulate more
According to Net News Ledger, law enforcement agents across Canada are recognizing that child Internet use is increasing, and they're advising parents to have the safety discussion with their kids. With this in mind, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection (CCCP) plans on releasing e-parenting safety sheets that parents can use to make sure they've covered all of the Internet safety bases and know how best to approach certain subjects.
These assets could also be helpful for adults who aren't completely sure about what constitutes a safe website, valid download link or a variety of other elements.
The news source also reported that some of this information from the CCCP will be distributed at Canadian schools in the near future.
The (ISC)2 Foundation and Scotiabank recommend making sure little ones know that when something is online, it's there forever, be suspicious of anyone and everyone online and understand the tools they're using beforehand.