21 October 2018
Images of WhatsApp As Facebook Inc. Makes Acquisition For $19 Billion

Survey: One in 3 HK youths engages in risky online activities

One in three Hong Kong primary and secondary students has engaged in high-risk activities online, according to a social media survey by a youth group.

These include dating with strangers, naked chats, accepting requests for sex and joining suicide forums, the Hong Kong Economic Times reported Monday, citing the survey. 

No breakdown of the activities was given. 

The Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups interviewed 1,443 students in primary six and secondary five and said the results showed the danger social media poses to young people is far greater than expected. 

The group has received 3,364 requests for counseling since August 2011, including one from a nine year old who has been repeatedly harassed by her online contacts for private information.

A young man in his twenties told counselors he had contracted AIDS after being exposed to sex partners by a match-making app, the group said.

Chuk Wing-hung, service director of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Hong Kong, said many social media apps offer a “recommended friends” function which could mislead young people into letting their guard down, thinking friends of their friends are people they can trust.

Clinical psychiatrist Daisy Chow said young people may think they should not upset their online friends by rejecting their requests, the report said.

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