Internet Safety Statistics

How are online issues affecting children?

Take a glance at these statistics to find out.


  • 93% of teens (12-17) go online.[1]
  • Of the children (0-5) who use the Internet, 80% use it at least once a week.[2]

Cell Phones

  • 75% of teens (12-17) have cell phones.[3]
  • On average, texting teens (12-17) send and receive 1500 text messages a month.[4]


  • 1 in 3 teens (12-17) have experienced online harassment.[5]
  • Girls are more likely to be victims of cyberbullying (38% girls vs. 26% boys).[6]

Online Gaming

  • 97% of teens (12-17) play computer, web, portable, or console games.[7]
  • 27% of teens (12-17) play games with people they don’t know online.[8]


  • Predators seek youths vulnerable to seduction, including those with histories of sexual or physical abuse, those who post sexually provocative photos/video, and those who talk about sex with unknown people online.[9]
  • Boys who are gay or questioning their sexuality are particularly at risk. 25% of victims are boys and almost all of their offenders are male.[10]
  • 1 in 25 youths received an online sexual solicitation where the solicitor tried to make offline contact.[11]
  • In more than one-quarter (27%) of incidents, solicitors asked youths for sexual photographs of themselves.[12]


  • 4% of cell-owning teens (12-17) say that they have sent sexually suggestive nude/semi-nude messages to others via text message.[13]
  • 15% of cell-owning teens (12-17) say they have received sexually suggestive nude/semi-nude images of someone they know via text.[14] 

Social Networking

  • 73% of teens (12-17) have profiles on social networking sites.[15]
  • 47% of teens (12-17) have uploaded photos; 14 % have posted videos.[16]


[1] Lenhart A. Social Media and Young Adults. Pew Internet and American Life Project, 2010.

[2] Gutnick A, Kotler J, Robb M, Takeuchi L. Always Connected: The new digital media habits of young children, Joan Ganz Cooney Center, 2011.

[3] Lenhart A. Teens and Mobile Phones. Pew Internet and American Life Project, 2010.

[4] Ibid.

[5] Lenhart A. Cyberbullying and Online Teens. Pew Internet and American Life Project, 2007.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Lehart A, et al. Teens, Games, and Civics. Pew Internet and American Life Project, 2008.

[8] Ibid.

[9] Wolak J, Finkelhor D, Mitchell K, Ybarra M. Online “Predators” and Their Victims: Myths, Realities, and Implications for Prevention and Treatment. American Psychologist, 2008;63, 111-128. 

[10] Ibid.

[11] Ibid.

[12] Ibid.

[13] Lenhart A. Teens and Sexting. Pew Internet & American Life Project, 2009.

[14] Ibid.

[15] Lenhart A. Social Media and Young Adults. Pew Internet & American Life Project, 2010.

[16] Lehart A. Teens and Social Media. Pew Internet & American Life Project, 2007.