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Zambia focusing on protecting youth online

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Zambia's Information and Communication Technology Authority to
Zambia’s Information and Communication Technology Authority to protect youth online. (Image Source: Zedchronicle.com).

The drafting process of Zambia’s national child online protection strategy has commenced. The strategy, put together by the Zambia Information and Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA), is expected to avoid exposing youths to dangerous and potentially harmful websites.

Ngabo Nankonde, ZICTA public relations representative said in an interview conducted by daily-mail.co.zm, that: “Recently conducted child online protection research revealed that Zambian children as young as five years old are using the internet without supervision.”

Due to this fact, ZICTA has now called upon the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in order to help with drafting the child online protection strategy. ZICTA recently partnered with Unicef to create awareness around the safe use of the internet and telecommunications services.

“Zambian youths risk becoming victims of online abuse,” said Nankonde. This is especially true if the youths are not supervised while browsing the internet.

While the majority of websites are safe, the truth of the matter is that there are websites out there that can not only be potentially harmful to children, but also risk the security and financial details of the parents. While browsing online, many adverts can appear, which may be appealing to click on. These adverts could infect a PC with malicious malware, trojans and virus software that could render a machine useless within a matter of seconds.

As stated by Nankonde, online abuse is also a major factor. With social media booming, there is good chance that the youth may be subjected to bullying on social media platforms.

Darryl Linington

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