Parents buy smartphones for their toddlers when they are as young as 5 years old, boosting the risk that malware infections and SMS fraud will increasingly target users who are still only learning to read, according to a study by Bitdefender.
The survey of more than 2,000 parents in the US, Spain, France, Germany, Romania, Brazil, Portugal, Italy and Russia showed that most parents buy an Android device for their kids when they are 10 to 13 years old. However, an increasing number of American children aged 7 to 9 and almost 3 per cent of 5 year-olds own one, too.
More than 9 per cent of US kids receive an Android device by their 10th birthday, while almost one in ten of American kids get a phone at age 8 or 9.
While children are increasingly familiar with sophisticated technology at a young age, early adoption of smartphones and tablets does pose risks. Though it might reassure parents that their children are in easy reach, a mobile phone at young ages can expose children to cyber-bullying, sexual predators, malware and fraud.
More info related to the study are available on Hotforsecurity.com.