Sexting Increasing Among Under-16s

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Following the news of sexting increasing among under-16s, here to comment on this news is David Emm, principal security researcher at Kaspersky Lab.

David Emm, principal security researcher at Kaspersky Lab

The news of sexting increasing among under-16s highlights the need to educate younger generations, as part of sex education in schools, on the importance of keeping personal information private. The dangers of oversharing information aren’t always obvious, and young people mustn’t adopt a false sense of security when posting information online.

With the rise in teenagers accessing new types of technology, such as dating apps, comes the need for them to exercise their own vigilance to help protect themselves, as unfortunately not all sites implement good security. We would recommend educating younger people on the risks which accompany these types of sites, such as the fact that once something is posted it’s public forever; which means they should always think twice before sharing private information in these very public ways. A good rule of thumb is that if you wouldn’t publish something on the front page of a newspaper, don’t post it online or trust it to an app.

But more than this, online or offline, meeting strangers will always have inherent risks. As such, it pays to ask teenagers to take the same precautions when arranging a real-world meeting with an online date as they would in ‘real life’ – for instance they wouldn’t arrange to meet a real life date down a dark alley having told no one where they were going. Whilst taking such precautions might not make them totally safe, it limits their exposure to risk.

About David Emm
David Emm is Principal Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab, a provider of security and threat management solutions. He has been with Kaspersky Lab since 2004 and is a member of the company’s Global Research and Analysis Team. He has worked in the anti-malware industry since 1990 in a variety of roles, including that of Senior Technology Consultant at Dr Solomon’s Software, and Systems Engineer and Product Manager at McAfee. In his current role, David regularly delivers presentations on malware and other IT security threats at exhibitions and events, highlighting what organisations and consumers can do to stay safe online. He also provides comment to broadcast and print media on the ever-changing cyber-security and threat landscape. David has a strong interest in malware, ID theft and the human aspects of security. David is a knowledgeable advisor on all aspects of online security.

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