AI, Gaming, and FinTech Emerge as Key Cybersecurity Threats for Children in 2024

By Sharique

A recently released report by Kaspersky identifies AI tools, gaming vulnerabilities, and the growth of FinTech as major cybersecurity threats facing children in 2024. The report also underscores concerns related to the increasing popularity of smart home devices and the delicate balance between children’s online privacy and parental supervision.

The heightened use of AI by children, as highlighted by a 2022 UN study, raises concerns about exposure to inappropriate content and potential security risks to personal data. Online gaming, engaged in by 91% of children aged 3-15, creates opportunities for cybercriminals to exploit trust through unmoderated features, leading to potential data extraction or the introduction of malicious files.The FinTech industry for young people introduces financial threats, with cybercriminals targeting children’s trust to obtain sensitive information or execute phishing scams. The surge in smart home devices also raises worries about compromised cybersecurity, allowing cybercriminals to exploit vulnerabilities for surveillance or physical attacks.The report emphasizes that balancing children’s desire for online privacy with effective parental supervision will be a key trend in 2024. Clear communication and boundary establishment are crucial in addressing this challenge.Children seeking unavailable apps outside official stores are at risk of downloading malicious copies. Kaspersky found over 190 Harly Trojan-infected apps on Google Play between 2020 and 2022, with an estimated 4.8 million downloads, potentially more victims than reported.Andrey Sidenko, security and privacy expert at Kaspersky, emphasized the need to teach children the basics of cybersecurity from an early age. He highlighted the importance of educating them about avoiding cyber-criminals, understanding gaming-related cyber threats, and safeguarding personal data.To assist parents in guiding their children in cybersecurity, Kaspersky recommends staying informed, monitoring online activities, communicating about online risks, and enforcing guidelines. Kaspersky has also released its Cybersecurity Alphabet booklet to aid parents and children in navigating key cybersecurity concepts.

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