Large-scale research on children's online safety for SID in Greece

With the pledge that every day will be Safer Internet Day (SID), children, young people, educators, parents and all other stakeholders in Greece participated in the celebration of SID 2019.

2019-02-13 Greek Safer Internet Centre

The 16th edition of SID was a highlight in Greece for more than one reason. The Greek Safer Internet Centre (SIC) published the results of a national survey on children's online behaviour with 14,000 participants between the ages of 10 to 17. This survey is the largest research on the topic of online behaviours ever made in the country. The survey was conducted between November and December 2018 in 400 schools across the country with the approval of the Greek Ministry of Education.

The main conclusions that have emerged and which have been a cause of concern both for parents, educators and for decision-makers are:

  • 70 per cent of children create a social networking profile in a non-eligible age;
  • 21 per cent of children have experienced online harassment. The majority (66 per cent) reacted by blocking the one who harassed them and only 21 per cent informed someone who they trusted;
  • 41 per cent of children accept friendship requests from strangers online;
  • 21 per cent of children have physically met someone they met online;
  • 14 per cent share personal and intimate content online;
  • 61 per cent have encountered inappropriate content online;
  • 34 per cent feel they are neglecting their real-life activities for the sake of the digital world;
  • 24 per cent say they either have internet addiction issues or they might have internet addiction issues;
  • 18 per cent of children using social networks do not have their profile on private, and 16 per cent do not know how to report someone or something that bothered them online;
  • 83 per cent of children say they surf online without the supervision of their parents;
  • According to children's answers, nearly half of the parents (41 per cent) do not apply any guidelines, nor do they impose any rules when it comes to internet usage.
  • 41 per cent of children start using the internet at the age of 7-8, while 20 per cent say they started using the internet at the very young age of 4-6.
  • The mobile phone is the main means of accessing the web (73 per cent). At the age of 10-12, 40 per cent of children have already acquired their own mobile phone, while 23 per cent get it at the age of 8-10.
  • The social network most used by children in Greece is Instagram (51 per cent). Facebook is used by only 11 per cent of children. YouTube is used by 40 per cent, Messenger by 19 per cent, Viber by 17 per cent, Skype and Snapchat by 11 per cent.

Infographic of the results of the Greek Safer Internet Day study on children online

The Greek SIC is collaborating with many organisations across the country in order to multiply our voices and spread the "safer internet" message to the entire country. The SIC has already developed a wide range of educational material to equip parents and educators with tools for supporting young people. Furthermore, the results of the national research, which are still being processed, will be a useful tool for the Greek SIC, Ministry of Education and teachers, for planning future awareness and education policy.

The full research report can be read on the SaferInternet4Kids website.

Check the Greek Safer Internet Day profile page for further information.

Find out more information about the work of the Greek Safer Internet Centre (SIC) generally, including its awareness raising, helpline, hotline and youth participation services, or find similar information for Safer Internet Centres throughout Europe.

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