Unfortunately, dangers exist online, and it is important for both children and adults to take precautions when using the internet. Parents need to be cautious and aware of security, and should also monitor their children’s internet use to prevent abuse or identity theft.
Plus, here are historical facts and first about the internet plus how it is consumed today.
49 Facts about the Internet
1. Internet Use is high in young children
In a survey of 825 adults and children between the ages of seven and 16, Shared Hope International found one out of eight parents allowed their children to use the internet from the age of two. Consequently, only one out of 10 make their children wait until they are 10 or older, as recommended by experts.
2. Unsupervised Use starts early
As a result, many children are using the internet unsupervised at an early age. Studies found that over 71 percent of parents do not supervise their children’s internet use after the age of 14, yet a shocking 72 percent of all missing children cases that begin online involve children who are 15 or older.
3. Kids Hide Online Information From Parents
Unfortunately, regardless of parental intentions and involvement, the Kidsafe Foundation reports nearly 32 percent of teenagers hide or delete their browsing history from their parents. It is imperative for parents to be diligent. Likewise, 16 percent of teens have email or social media accounts their parents are unaware of. Often, children even lie about their ages in order to create such accounts, attracting attention from older children or even adults.
4. Sexual Predators operate online
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) reports 15 percent of children between ages 10 and 17 have been contacted via the internet for sexual intent. It is highly likely many of these solicitors are sexual predators. Adults and children need to use the same precautions online they do when confronted with a stranger face-to-face.
According to the Associated Press, over 90,000 sexual predators have been discovered and removed by authorities from the vast social networking site MySpace, once popular among teenagers. Many of these predators have been tried, convicted, and are now incarcerated.
5. Sexual Solicitation can happen online
Contrary to popular belief, children and teenagers are more likely to be solicited online by peers their own age. A majority of these online sexual solicitations are by males between the ages of 18 and 55. As previously stated, their victims almost always go willingly to meet these predators. Around 26 percent of online sex offenders found out their victim’s exact whereabouts by using the information posted on the victim’s social networking site.
As the internet grows, so does the solicitation of minors for sex. A survey by the Santa Clara, CA Sheriff’s office reports solicitation of sex online is growing at the rate of 1,000 percent each month! This is another reason it is important individuals do not make their whereabouts and contact information public.
6. Friends With Strangers are common
Often, teenagers and sometimes even adults are Facebook friends and have conversations online with individuals they have never met in person. Teenagers are trusting – often willing to meet with strangers. A recent study found 16 percent of teenagers have simply considered meeting someone they have conversed with online, and 8 percent have actually physically met with someone.
7. Public Social Media
A recent study found only 62 percent of teens have their Facebook account set to private. A staggering 17 percent have all of their information, including contact information and whereabouts, public.
8. Explicit Photos are more common than you might think
Research indicates one in seven teenagers have taken a nude or semi-nude photograph of themselves, and over half of those photographs taken have been shared with another person via the internet. It is important to note once something crosses the internet, there is no way to remove it.
9. Online Bullying happens
There are several anonymous conversational apps and sites where individuals can ask questions or post information to others. These anonymous apps, which include Whisper, Yik Yak, and Ask.FM, are dangerous because they promote bullying. Hiding behind a computer screen, anonymous bullies can easily taunt, tease, and put down others.
Believe it or not, adults, especially senior citizens, are susceptible to cyberbullying, just as are children and teenagers. It is important to never respond to threatening or obscure messages and to always remain diligent and to report any abuse, whether suspected or proven.
10. Identity Theft can happen to children
Children are victims of identity theft more often than is known. In fact, compared to adults, children under the age of 18 are 51 times more likely to have their identities stolen. Criminals target children because they have clean credit records and, as previously reported, frequently post personal information publically. Criminals are sometimes able to use an unsuspecting child’s identity for years unnoticed.
11. Cyber Attacks also happen to kids
Internet safety is as important for adults as it is for children and teens. In a recent survey, one in 10 adults who use social media claim to have been a victim of a cyber attack. It is important to have security and ant-virus software installed on all computers, especially those holding personal information.
12. Cell Phones are common amongst kids
Cell phones are great for keeping in touch and in case of emergencies. Many parents buy cell phones for their children. In fact, approximately 69 percent of 11 to 14-year-olds have their own cell phones. All cell phone users need to be aware that a cell phone’s GPS can provide others with the user’s exact physical location. Also, always be cautious about posting personal cell phone numbers online.
13. Your actions online are being tracked
It is important to be aware and diligent when surfing the web. Web usage and history are constantly being tracked. Visiting insecure or inappropriate websites can compromise your personal and financial information or harm your computer. Again, security and ant-virus software are a must for all computers.
14. Online Shopping can open the door to cyber crime
Online shopping is more compelling than ever, no doubt because of its convenience and affordability. According to Business Insider, 78 percent of the U.S. population age 15 and over made an online purchase during 2014. Needless to say, cybercriminals have learned to exploit this convenience.
One should always use a secure connection, never use a public computer, and ensure websites are legitimate and secure before placing an order online. Following these precautions will provide shoppers with a safer experience.
15. Video Games can also be a vehicle for communication
Video games have come a long way in recent years. With the many gaming options available, parents need to be aware most gaming devices can directly connect children to the internet and other players. Fortunately, most gaming devices have parental controls and safety settings. These settings allow restricted access, restricted audio chat use, and allow the choice of whom to play. Parents should also limit the amount of time their children play video games.
16. Half of the traffic on the internet is file sharing and media streaming.
17. The internet has 3.26 billion users.
18. 1.7 billion of those 3.26 billion users are in Asia.
19. Two-thirds of internet activity is done by bots and malware.
20. The most viewed video ever on Youtube is “Gangnam Style” by the Korean rapper Psy.
21. Google has around 3 billion searches a day on average.
22. Google’s average search time is 0.2 seconds.
23. The world’s first website is still online. The landing page is at CERN, where Tim Berners-Lee first put the global network online.
24. 90% of adults in the USA are online. 100% of Americans between the ages of 18 and 29 are online.
25. The first bitcoin transaction took place in 2009.
26. Twitter was first called Twttr and the first tweet was sent on March 21, 2006.
27. The first Youtube video was uploaded in 2005.
28. Mark Zuckerberg was the 4th person to join Facebook (Facebook users are each assigned a number based on the date they joined the site).
29. Most of the main dating websites and apps are owned by Match, the creators of match.com.
30. Google was named after a large number called a googol. Search engines weren’t very good before Google. Google was the first search engine to use feedback like what results users clicked on to make its search results better.
31. The MP3 audio format was invented in 1995 by Karlheinz Brandenburg. The format was revolutionary for being able to make audio files very small without compromising the quality of the sound.
32. The general public only got access to the internet in 1991. The internet had existed for over 10 years before that time but it was only in Universities.
33. The term World Wide Web was aptly created by the inventor of the internet Tim Berners-Lee. He also invented HTML.
34. The first .com website was for a computer company called Symbolics. Symbolics.com went live in 1985. The company is gone and the domain has changed hands but it is still an active site and the oldest site in the .com world. I wonder what its domain authority is??
35. The first spam email was sent in 1978 by a guy selling computers.
36. The word “internet” was first used in 1974.
37. Email was created by computer scientist Ray Tomlinson in 1974.
38. The first network of linked computers took place in 1969. Four computers were linked together by computer scientists.
39. The term “surfing” was first used in 1992 by a librarian in New York called Jean Armour Polly. She is also known as Net Mom.
40. The original websites for the movies Space Jam and You’ve Got Mail are still live on the internet.
41. Between 16 and 20% of the searches on Google each day have never been googled before.
42. The first image was uploaded to the internet by Tim Berners-Lee. It was of a joke band of women from the lab CERN where he worked.
43. The most expensive keyword on Google Adwords is insurance.
44. The GIF format was invented in 1987 by an engineer at Compuserve. He claims that it was meant to be pronounced “jiff” but that hasn’t turned out too well.
45. The internet was invented to allow the US Department of Defense to communicate if a nuclear war took place.
46. As of the last quarter of 2020, Twitter had more than 187 million users.
47. Facebook remains the most popular social media platform with at least 2.6 billion users every month.
48. More than 90% of users access the internet using a mobile device.
49. There are over 1.7 billion websites on the internet.