Online abuse Facts and statistics
We don’t know how many children and young people are affected by online abuse. Children often:
- don’t tell anyone because they feel ashamed or guilty
- may not know who to tell
- may not realise they are being abused.
8 to 11 year olds and 12 to 15 year olds has a social media profile
Explanation: Based on 1,375 in-home interviews with parents and children aged 5-15, conducted from April-June 2016. Nearly 1/4 of children who go online aged 8-11 (26%) and nearly 3/4 who go online aged 12-15 (74%) have a social media profile. When calculated for all children (as opposed to just children who go online) 23% of 8-11s and 72% of 12-15s have a social media profile.
internet users are children
Explanation: Although it is not currently possible to calculate the precise proportion of internet users that are children, Livingstone et al's estimate takes in to account the following factors:
- under-18s comprise 1/3 of the world's population
- while children make up only 1/5 of the population in developed countries, growth in the online population is now greatest in developing countries, where children comprise between 1/3 and 1/2 of the population
- across countries for which internet use data is available, the average percentage of 0- to 15-year-olds online is similar to the percentage of 25- to 74-year-olds online. While infants are less likely to be internet users, young people aged 15 to 24 are more likely to be online than older people.
have experienced something upsetting on a social networking site.
Explanation: 28% of children aged 11-16 (23% of children aged 11-12) who have a profile on a social networking site, had experienced something upsetting on it in the last year.
Based on a survey of 1,024 young people aged 11-16 across the UK who had a social networking profile.
Children experienced a wide range of upsetting things. The most common upsetting experience was ‘trolling’ (defined as ‘unkind comments or rumours circulated online’). However, a significant minority had received sexual messages, been encouraged to self-harm, or subjected to language which was violent or aggressive.
There were overwith young people who talked to Childline about online issues last year
Explanation:12,328 counselling sessions with young people who contacted Childline for support and advice on online issues. This included online sexual abuse, online bullying and online safety.
See Indicator 9 in How safe are our children? 2017.
have been a victim of cyberbullying.
Explanation: Based on a poll of 11- to 17-year-olds undertaken by internet security firm McAfee. 35% reported that they have experienced cyberbullying – compared with 16% the previous year. Four in 10 said they had witnessed others being picked on online – almost double the 22% recorded the previous year.
have looked for or received information or advice about how to help their child manage
Explanation: Based on 1,375 in-home interviews with parents and children aged 5-15, conducted from April-June 2016.
72% parents of children aged 5-15 have looked for or received information or advice from any source, and 55% have looked for or received it from the child's school. 33% say they have looked for or received information or advice from friends or family, 14% from internet service providers, 12% from the media and 11% from the child themselves.
Almostyoung people have come across .
Explanation: During Spring/Summer 2010, 1,032 children aged 9-16 years old who use the internet were interviewed in the UK. A follow up interview with a further 516 children aged 9-16 took place in 2013.
Due to the sensitive nature of the nature of the websites, only children aged 11 and older were asked if they had seen instances of potentially harmful user-generated content (UGC).
In 2010, 13% of these children reported exposure to hate messages. This had risen to 23% by 2013.
There were overwith young people who talked in about online in 2016/17
Explanation: There were 2,132 counselling sessions with young people who specifically talked about online child sexual exploitation , which includes online grooming, online sexual harrassment and engaging in sexually explicit activity online, in 2016/17. This was a 44% increase on the previous year.
See Indicator 9 in How safe are our children? 2017 and our summary of child protection register statistics in the UK (PDF).
In 2016, the Internet Watch Foundation identifiedcontaining child sexual abuse images
Explanation: In 2016, the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) identified and worked with partners to remove 57,335 URLs confirmed as hosting child sexual abuse images worldwide.
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