52 percent Mumbai youth unprepared to tackle cybercrime

Updated: Sep 18, 2019, 07:43 IST | Pallavi Smart | Mumbai

Fact revealed in survey conducted by a group of first year students of St Xavier's College

Representation pic/Getty Images
Representation pic/Getty Images

Today's youth are glued to their mobile phones for most part of their days, scrolling through their social media profiles, but are they equipped to protect themselves against cybercrime? Not really. Fifty-two per cent youngsters in the city have no clue about redressal policies on social networking sites, a survey has found.

The survey titled — Impact of Social Media on Youth — was conducted by a group of 11 first year Bachelor of Arts students of St Xavier's College under the guidance of Prof Avkash Jadhav of the Department of History. Jadhav said he chose the topic to help his students understand the varied aspects of excessive use of social media by millennials. The findings were based on the evaluation of responses from 1,000 youngsters aged between 16 and 25.

Sahita Chesetty, one of the 11 students, said, "I have found that most of youngsters share a large amount of personal information on social media but are unaware of the privacy and redressal policies. This can be very dangerous and can lead to cyberbullying, stalking and several other crimes."

Pratham Barot, another student, said while social networking sites can be useful, there are major security concerns that most users often overlook. "This project shed light on the usefulness of social media. However, the most important concern today is 'privacy'. The survey shows ignorance of privacy and redressal policies lead to unwanted circumstances in most cases."

The findings highlight the need for awareness about cybercrime, especially when 79 per cent youngsters in the city spend most of their day checking social networking sites -- Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram and Twitter. While the remaining 21 per cent aren't daily users, they do check their social media profiles from time to time.

Of the 79 per cent, 33 per cent spend about 2-3 hours daily on social media, while 27 per cent spend about one hour at least. In addition, 33 per cent of the respondents said they feel isolated and disconnected if they stay away from their social media life for long, with 16 per cent even feeling anxious or restless.

Prof Jadhav said, "Society is changing. We use social media to connect or to revive our social life, but it has inadvertently also made us somewhat isolated. The findings alert us to our preparedness of handling issues of cyber crime, which often go unreported due to lack of awareness."

No. of respondents of the survey

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