DIGITAL LITERACY AND THE PERCEPTIONS OF ONLINE GROOMING
Recent developments in computer technology have increased the number of internet stalkers, child pornographers, traffickers and sexual predators. In a world where digital literacy is on the rise and people strive to keep up with the latest technology, this paper explores the relationship between digital literacy and online grooming(computer-mediated sexual grooming) and offline grooming (localized sexual grooming) and the effect of age, gender, marital status and parental status on the way individuals perceive grooming. This data was collected via a survey from 256 respondents who are 18 years and above and classified as parents within the United States. Several analyses such as correlations, Mann-Whitney U test and Kruskal Wallis H test were conducted, and our results suggest that there is a relationship between digital literacy and the perceptions of grooming, which may have implications on cybersecurity awareness training. The results highlight the importance of digital literacy in the perception of computer-mediated sexual grooming and familial sexual grooming, with enough evidence to support its essential role in people’s sense of safety. In conclusion, this study emphasized the need for targeted programs and campaigns to create education and awareness with the aim of improving parental digital literacy skills, understanding of grooming risks, and responsible Internet use education across society.
- Master of Science
- Computer and Information Technology
- West Lafayette