Teenage boys are more likely than girls to be monitored by parents on Facebook, according to a three-month study by Bitdefender, a provider of antivirus solutions.
Parents are 50 per cent more likely to monitor the Facebook account of boys between the ages of 13 and 17 than girls of the same age, according to the study of more than 1,600 volunteers. The data also shows the rate of monitoring spikes upward in the back-to-school season, when boys face an even greater level of scrutiny in comparison to girls. In September, boys are 60 per cent more likely to have their Facebook accounts monitored than are girls.
“It may seem counterintuitive but our research shows parents are more protective of boys online than girls,” said Catalin Cosoi, Chief Security Strategist at Bitdefender. “This is possibly a result of the perception that boys engage in more risky behaviour online than girls. Cyber-bullying and cyber-baiting, a new trend that humiliates teachers through sharing of videos posted online, are also more commonly associated with masculine behaviour. At the same time, our data shows girls and women are more cautious about communicating with strangers online, perhaps earning greater trust from their parents.”
The recently launched Bitdefender Total Security 2013 and Bitdefender Internet Security 2013 include Parental Control that allows parents to protect their children by checking up on their use of an Internet-connected device. Facebook monitoring helps parents keep an eye on social accounts with their kids’ consent, but without being necessarily in the friends’ list. It also allows them to receive extensive reports on comments, posts, photos, and children’s main interests.