Parents unaware of web safety controls on their kids’ mobiles

A fresh study conducted by YouGov has revealed that 85 per cent of UK children do not have parental controls activated on their mobile handsets.

According to the study, 48 per cent of parents considered it unnecessary to activate parental control on the mobile phones of their children, while 40 per cent admitted that they were unaware of such controls’ existence.

During the study, which was commissioned by the mobile phone retailer Carphone Warehouse, YouGov questioned three thousand parents of children aged between 8 to 16 years.

Child Internet safety expert Prof Tanya Byron said that low level of awareness among parents was worrying. She said parents were unaware that risks to their children included pornographic content, cyber bullying and identity theft.

Earlier, such problems were believed to come from computers, but the increase of smartphone technology has enhanced concerns about children accessing web on their mobile phones.

Speaking on the issue, Ms Byron said, "Online risks to children are as prevalent when they access the internet via their mobile phone as when they access it via their PC or laptop.”

Andrew Harrison, chief executive of Carphone Warehouse, said that parents are cautious about Internet safety on the computers, the idea of web safety on mobile phones is still a relatively new concept.