Insightful Cox study: Kids’ online interactions explored

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A new study released by Cox Communications discovered there is a correlation between location sharing in apps and kids and teens communicating with strangers online. 

More than half of the parents surveyed said their children have location sharing turned on in apps on their phones, making it easy for them to be tracked.

Susan Anable, Phoenix Vice President for Cox Communications, joined Arizona Horizon to talk more about the things parents can do to protect their kids from turning off location sharing to teaching digital literacy.

“We have an obligation to help make sure that the people we connect with, have knowledge, have information and can make good choices,” Anable said. “So by asking these parents, we said, ‘What do you know about how your kids are engaging online?’ And we found some pretty alarming information, and then we found some sort of promising information as well.”

According to Anable, 56% of the parents reported their kids had location-sharing services on apps that are public-facing, and 31% of those parents said a stranger had contacted their children on their cell phones.

While the percentage seems alarming, Anable said nowadays parents are more engaged and more involved in what their kids are doing on their phones. 

“For every technology advancement out there, the kids have a way of hiding it from their parents. So parents have to stay on top of it, and good communication and trust is key to that to make sure that you can have those conversations with your kids, and they’re not hiding it,” Anable said.

Anable said Cox Communications has a digital academy where free tools are provided to the public for those who may not be as comfortable with technology.

Susan Anable, Phoenix Vice President for Cox Communications

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