Published 9th February
The main points from this Office for National Statistics (ONS) analysis are:
- Almost 9 in 10 children (89%) aged 10 to 15 years said they went online every day.
- While the majority of children told us they only spoke to or exchanged messages with people online who they knew in person, around one in six children (17%)
- aged 10 to 15 years spoke with someone they had never met before (equivalent to 682,000 children) in the previous 12 months.
- An estimated 1 in 50 children (2%) said that they spoke to or messaged someone online in the previous 12 months who they thought was their age but later found out were much older.
- An estimated 5% of children aged 10 to 15 years met up in person with someone they had only spoken to online (equivalent to 212,000 children) in the previous 12 months.
- Around 1 in 10 children (11%) aged 13 to 15 years reported receiving a sexual message, while 1 in 100 reported sending a sexual message, in the previous 12 months.
- Girls aged 13 to 15 years were significantly more likely to report receiving sexual messages than boys (16% compared with 6%) in the previous 12 months.
- The majority of parents or guardians of children aged 10 to 15 years (64%) had some sort of rules about the length of time and when their children can go online.