Exposure to the internet in recent years has provided countless benefits for humankind. At this time about every human is known to mobile phones and how to use them. Now people use the internet as a part of their daily routine, be it finding a location or getting a recipe. The mobile phone penetration has also some concerns that need to be addressed before any further advancement. One of them is protecting minors from age-restricted content or simply setting an age verification solution.
Is There Anything That is Not Good for Kids on the Internet?
The internet is a new world, where a user can access almost anything. As it is said that everything is just one click away either you want to book an airline ticket or buy a camera. Anything that comes into the mind of the user is searchable. Most of the time, every search has a result. Websites and web browsers have worked a lot on providing requested information to the right user. The website ranking and search engine optimization assist in this.
Kids being more attracted to modern gadgets use more internet than other age groups. Studies and surveys show that most of the active users are kids. According to Statista between May 2019 and June 2020, the percentage of kids’ visits to internet communication media is 24.16 percent.
Harassment, Blackmailing and Cyberbullying on Social Media Platforms
Social media indeed helps in making the world a global village. But the unfiltered access to social networking sites is good at all. Minors regularly use these sites either for uploading images or hitting likes. The dilemma of the highest likes on posts has increased the usage.
Kids want regular updates on their posts and shares, that is why they check their phones frequently. Also, the websites keep sending notifications of every activity that incites them to check their social media account. As there is no age verification check, kids can easily fall victim to cyberbullying and harassment. There are also members of social media groups that use offensive language, kids can experience it too. Additionally, some groups contain adult-related content. Being a member of that group can cause further problems for kids.
The messaging or chatting has zero checks, anyone can text a user on social media. This means that the websites have left kids with no security. Kids can face scams, frauds, and phishing attacks through messaging. It can also be used for payment frauds, in which a fraudster asks for a credit card or bank account number of their parents.
Blackmailing is the primary disadvantage of social media websites. They post their photos, check-ins, and travel history about every time. The privacy of users is compromised in this case. A scammer can blackmail a user by knowing this information. Furthermore, kids are easy prey to blackmail because they are not mature enough to deal with it.
E-commerce Businesses Selling Sensitive Products
E-commerce proved to be very useful during the lockdown. Customers can’t visit a store physically, so they choose to order online. The e-commerce businesses have flourished greatly in the last year. Now that lockdown restrictions are not that strict and customers can visit markets. But the trend of online purchases has not dropped, some customers have built their habit to do so.
These businesses sell sensitive products like electronic gadgets or wires. These commodities should only be purchased by the experts not kids. They might order something like this for fun but can give negative outcomes.
Online Pharmacies With Prescribed-Only Drugs
Now a patient can get transmission of his medicine on the same day through online pharmacies. There are mobile apps that deliver drugs as per a patient’s routine. But like e-commerce websites, pharmacies possess the same level of risk. These medicines, if taken improperly can harm the health of a person especially kids.
The reason is kids have a weak immune system that can’t fight the side effects of a drug. Kids can order medicine using their parents’ prescription.
Wrapping It Up
Social media platforms should set age verification during account sign-up, while e-commerce businesses and the pharmaceutical industry should verify age while checkout. There are digital age verification solutions that can verify a user’s age through his id documents in real-time.