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Monitor children's use of phones to counter cyber threats - DPM

Last Update: 03/11/2018

SEREMBAN, Nov 3 (Bernama) — Parents must monitor their children’s use of mobile phones to prevent the youngsters from falling victim to cyber threats, including pornography, sexual exposure and child grooming, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.

She said this was based on the 5th Malaysia Population and Family Survey (KPKM-5, 2014) and a study by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) in 2017.

She said the KPKM-5 2014 survey found that the telephone was the highest medium of communication between teenagers and parents at 73 per cent was followed by the short messaging system (54.6 percent) and social media (15.6 percent).

The MCMC’s survey found that 83.2 percent of children aged from five years to 17 years were Internet users and 93 percent of them surfed the net using their smart phones, she said.

“We all need to accept that a new generation has dawned on our children … but still, we as parents must act wisely to tackle future challenges.

“Many are so engrossed in social media that they ignore the many aspects of direct interaction that is needed in a family to foster a joyous atmosphere that can further strengthen family ties.

“Knowing the situation, the National Population and Family Development Board (LPPKN) has organised a campaign called ‘No Gadget Hour’ aimed at ensuring that parents spend quality time with their children and not focus on gadgets,” she said in her opening remarks at the National Family Month Celebration 2018 at the Negeri Sembilan LPPKN Centre here today.

She also welcomed the cooperation between the United Nations Population Fund and LPPKN in developing a virtual app called mykafeTEEN, saying it would provide additional support for parents with teenage children.

“This teen-friendly app is the latest LPPKN effort to educate and support youngsters, especially on health issues.

“The services provided include information on reproductive health and edutainment games as well as Teen Talk and Teen Chat with teen counsellors and doctors.

Dr Wan Azizah said that in conjunction with the National Family Month 2018, the concept of ‘Cyber Intelligent Family’ would be used as a medium in the implementation of various activities, like seminars, forums and interactive programmes throughout the country this November.

“This is to enhance knowledge regarding the ethical use of social media for family well-being and to raise awareness of cyber threats without control and monitoring,” she said.




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