1 in 4 parents believe child is addicted to gaming, research suggests

Gaming, News

The latest research from digital identity security specialists, ID Crypt Global, has revealed that a quarter of UK parents (23%), believe their child is addicted to gaming, with them becoming annoyed, frustrated or angry if prevented from playing their gaming device of choice. 

The survey of over 1,300 UK parents found that 75% said that their child games, either via a console or handheld device. 

79% do so online, either with friends (50%), other gamers (2%) or both (27%), with 38% of parents believing that the number of hours they spend gaming on a weekly basis is excessive. 

In fact, a third of parents said their child games for more than 10 hours a week. 11% said they play for between 11 to 15 hours, a further 10% stated they game for between 16 to 20 hours, while one in 10 also said their child games for more than 20 hours a week. 

Around a quarter (23%) play games late into the evening, for one in 10 (9%) it’s the first thing they do in the morning, with a further 12% playing both first thing in the morning and late into the night. 

Perhaps most worryingly, 41% of parents stated that their child becomes annoyed, frustrated or even angry if they are prevented from gaming, with a similar number (42%) believing that they also spend less time outside because they game. 

12% also stated that that their child regularly spends money when gaming, with 8% having had their child spend their parents money on gaming without permission. 

No surprise then, given such behaviour, almost a quarter of those surveyed (23%) believe their child is addicted to gaming.

Says CEO and Founder of ID Crypt Global, Lauren Wilson-Smith:

“The dangers of online gaming and the platform it provides for strangers to communicate with our children have been long documented, but it’s fair to say that the evolution of gaming has also presented other concerns far beyond these immediate safety threats. 

“A move towards monetising online gaming beyond subscription fees has seen children encouraged to spend more money on add ons, for example like card packs, that may or may not contain their favourite football player. 

“This has essentially exposed children to the highs and lows of gambling at a far younger age, encouraging addictive behaviour in the process. 

“It can be incredibly hard for a parent to know exactly what their child is doing online, how often they are gaming and whether or not their behaviour is changing as a result. So it’s vital that we have the security measures in place to monitor such activities and act if needed.”


Chris Price
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