Bharat Ratna Sachin Tendulkar helps to launch Kaspersky Kids, an initiative to protect children in India against cyber-crime
Kaspersky Lab today announced the launch of ‘Kaspersky Kids’ at the Ryan International School Group’s campus in Mumbai. Under the program, the Ryan group will support Kaspersky Lab’s efforts to educate their students so that they can enjoy a safer Internet experience. Kaspersky Lab will deliver online safety education through various touch points, including a daily blog (Kaspersky Daily), online newsletters created especially for young audiences, training modules that can be administered by the school’s computer instructors, and on-ground engagement events and contests.
Eugene Kaspersky, Chairman and CEO of Kaspersky Lab, said: “Our mission is to save the world from all kinds of cyber-threats. We want to make the Internet – the greatest innovation of our time – safe for everyone. And of course that means making it secure for our children, protecting them from harmful content and teaching them to use it wisely. This is the reason why we are starting this campaign in India: we want to reach students through their schools, educate them and increase their awareness of online threats.”
Bharat Ratna and Kaspersky Lab’s brand ambassador Sachin Tendulkar was also present at the launch. He announced the auction of one of his signed bats to support the noble cause of creating awareness among kids. “The Internet is a great enabler. It serves the needs of curious young minds but also poses certain inherent risks. As parents, we are not just worried about the well-being and safety of our children in the real world but also in the online world. In this context, I believe the Kaspersky Kids program is a great initiative and will create better informed and more responsible Internet citizens of tomorrow.”
Mr. Ryan Pinto, CEO, Ryan International Group of Schools said, “We are really pleased that Kaspersky has chosen to launch Kaspersky Kids from our campus. We will ensure all our students across 16 states and 40 cities are aware of the essential dos and don’ts of being on the Internet. Today almost all children, regardless of age, either play on their parents’ smartphones or access the Internet on their own laptops, iPads and other devices – but they rarely have any formal training about what to click and what to avoid. That’s why it is vital that children get a basic understanding of the principles of Internet safety.”
“Schools will play a crucial role in making the program successful and Kaspersky Lab plans to tie up with India’s top 50 schools by December 2014 and reach out to as many students and engage with them through periodic communication on safe online behavior, new threats and virus alerts. By end of 2015, Kaspersky Lab wants to reach out to more than one million pupils and parents to maximize awareness,” said Maxim Mitrokhin, director of operations, Kaspersky Lab, Asia-Pacific.
“The Kaspersky Kids online newsletter contains safety tips, video tutorials, self-assessment tests for students and their parents to ensure they understand Internet security. As part of the program, Kaspersky Lab also plans to conduct contests involving parents, teachers and students, rewarding the winners with cool Sachin Tendulkar signed merchandise and Kaspersky goodies, including AV protection,” said Altaf Halde, Managing Director, Kaspersky Lab, South Asia.
India has the 2nd largest Internet base in the world and the 2nd largest Facebook user base after US and Canada. With more than 250 million Internet users in India, of whom 110 million are mobile Internet users, the country’s Internet population base is expected to reach 519 million by 2018.
Research on Internet usage by children in India
Meanwhile Kaspersky Lab’s latest research on children’s Internet usage preferences showed that in India about 46.6% of kids (under 18) have attempted to browse pornography. Let’s look at a few other numbers: 17.2% of kids have made attempts to download or access game sites in India and 11.9% Indian kids of those surveyed have attempted to access sites that require payment by credit card.
“These findings are collated from data taken from Kaspersky Security Network, based on notifications from the Parental Control module in Kaspersky Lab security products. This does not involve any personal information because we do not observe individual users. Instead this permits analysis of the types of undesirable content that children most often reach, giving percentages of visits across 10 different categories of website. Because these statistics are collected anonymously we cannot know the age of the users in question but we can guess that when Parental Control modules are activated it means there are under-18s in the family. We can also identify location by country,” said Anna Larkina, Senior Web Content analyst, Kaspersky Lab.
Traditionally, the categories that are considered the most undesirable for children have been Pornography (erotic materials), Violence, and Drugs. The other seven on the list – Illegal software, explicit language, weapons, gambling, anonymous proxy servers, payment systems and online games are regarded as less dangerous, but still containing harmful content for a kid. Social networking was removed from the research for two reasons. First it’s clear that it will be the most popular category and second we wanted to draw attention to other problematic areas.