Young kids don't realise online danger

I am concerned that 12-year-olds in Singapore are spending 61/2 hours daily on electronic devices (Glued to screen for 61/2 hours; April 2).

With such access to the online world, the children are at risk of being exposed to many dangers, such as inappropriate content and cyber-bullying.

Given their young age, they may not be able to overcome these threats, which may have an adverse impact on them.

Young children also may not realise the consequences of their actions. Words and pictures posted online cannot be taken back easily. Should they make a mistake, they may find themselves unable to deal with the problems it brings.

It is commendable that the Ministry of Education is conducting talks and online programmes to raise awareness of the dangers of the Internet and to teach children to adopt good habits online.

However, parents should supplement the initiatives and set good examples for their children, by spending more time with them instead of being preoccupied with their devices themselves.

They should also take concrete steps to reduce the amount of time their children spend online.

Low Zi Yan, 16, Secondary 4 student

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 20, 2017, with the headline 'Young kids don't realise online danger'. Print Edition | Subscribe