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Scammers target children with online games

22 Sep 2011

Scammers and hackers are increasingly targeting children with eye-catching online games, according to security providers BitDefender.

Catalin Cosoi, head of BitDefender’s online threats lab, says with most adults wary of the signs that foreshadow online threats, hackers are going for ‘easier targets’.

"Kids are more easily tempted into clicking on that big green download butoon or flashing icon in hopes of having more fun,” Cosoi says.

"A four-year-old, obviously, isn’t worried about online banking vulnerabilities.”

A study released by BitDefender earlier this year found that 24.7% of parents in the US and UK didn’t monitor their childrens’ online activity, and 44.3% said their children had accessed sites they shouldn’t have.

Sites with educational material for children could also contain threats.

Cosoi says in addition to monitoring online activity, parents can create separate computer accounts for their children, and set these up to prevent the installation of applications or modification of critical systems settings.