START A PETITION 25,136,189 members: the world's largest community for good
START A PETITION
x
774,424 people care about Education

More Than 5 Million Facebook Users Are 10 Or Younger

More Than 5 Million Facebook Users Are 10 Or Younger

More than 5 million children aged 10 and under, well below Facebook’s minimum age of 13, use the service, Consumer Reports has found in its 2011 State of the Net Survey.

More Than One Third Of Minors Using Facebook Illegally

The report found that at least 7.5 million children—more than one-third of the 20 million minors who actively used Facebook in the past year—were under 13 and violated the site’s terms, which prohibit kids that young from joining.

From Consumer Reports:

Our survey unearthed several disturbing findings about children and Facebook:

    •    Of the 20 million minors who actively used Facebook in the past year, 7.5 million—or more than one-third—were younger than 13 and not supposed to be able to use the site.

    •    Among young users, more than 5 million were 10 and under, and their accounts were largely unsupervised by their parents.

    •    One million children were harassed, threatened, or subjected to other forms of cyberbullying on the site in the past year.

Clearly, using Facebook presents children and their friends and families with safety, security, and privacy risks.

Easy For Preteens To Lie About Their Age

Facebook screens applicants by asking for their birth date and rejecting those too young. But it’s easy for preteens to slip through by lying about their birth date.

More from Consumer Reports:

Children under 13 who post personal information on Facebook that can be publicly viewed defeat protections afforded by the Federal Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA). That act prohibits sites from knowingly disclosing children’s personally identifiable information. “We are very concerned about kids eliding around COPPA’s restrictions,” Federal Trade Commission chair Jon Leibowitz told us.

So Where Are Mom And Dad?

it seems that parents of kids 10 and younger are not too concerned.  According to Consumer Reports, only 18 percent made their child a Facebook friend, which is the best way to monitor a child. By comparison, 62 percent of parents of 13- to 14-year-olds friended their child.

Do parents of young kids think they are less likely to take risks? Or are they unaware that their children are on Facebook?

Parents need to monitor their children closely and let them know that it is illegal for them to be on Facebook under age 13. And if their over-13-year-olds are on Facebook, parents need to be on there too, periodically reading their wall, news feeds and inbox, to make sure they are using Facebook responsibly, and to help keep them safe.

My son is now in his twenties, and I guess I’m very glad Facebook wasn’t around when he was growing up.

 

Read more: , , , , , ,

Photo Credit: iStock

quick poll

vote now!

Loading poll...

have you shared this story yet?

some of the best people we know are doing it

51 comments

+ add your own
5:27AM PDT on Jun 28, 2012

good to know

6:39AM PST on Feb 4, 2012

Where did we fail in educating today's parents?

6:56PM PST on Dec 1, 2011

wow

9:23PM PDT on Aug 1, 2011

Wow.

6:37PM PDT on Jul 25, 2011

This is shocking!

8:23AM PDT on Jun 9, 2011

Well they had to lie to get an account. That's an interesting stat as well.

1:34PM PDT on Jun 8, 2011

Its wrong

7:33PM PDT on May 18, 2011

My son is 11. I have a child-space made for him that's directly attached to MY profile. Nothing happens w/o me knowing about it. Other than that, there is no need for anyone younger than the specified age needs to be able to log in. They're not old enough to understand what is or isn't acceptable.

2:17AM PDT on May 18, 2011

I think parents should try teaching their kids about the dangers of using facebook when they're under aged.

10:27AM PDT on May 16, 2011

My parent's made it simple. If I wanted a facebook, or a myspace, they would be given the password so they could check EXACTLY what I was doing. If I had objections, I cpuld wait until I was older. I gave in and (gasp) lived.

add your comment



Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

Recent Comments from Causes

The basis for the Foundation for Moral Law's objection to same-sex marriage would equally have applied…

I couldn't bear to watch the video. I had to cover my laptop screen with my hand so I wouldn't have…

meet our writers

Steve Williams Steve Williams is a passionate supporter of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans (LGBT) rights, human... more
Story idea? Want to blog? Contact the editors!
ads keep care2 free

more from causes

Animal Welfare

Causes Canada

Causes UK

Children

Civil Rights

Education

Endangered Wildlife

Environment & Wildlife

Global Development

Global Warming

Health Policy

Human Rights

LGBT rights

Politics

Real Food

Trailblazers For Good

Women's Rights




Select names from your address book   |   Help
   

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.