ECONOMY

Turkcell launches digital intell. program for children

Turkey's leading GSM operator Turkcell launched a program Monday named to protect children from cyber risks.

"We should raise awareness of our children on cyber risks and prepare them for the future without losing time," Kaan Terzioğlu, head of Turkcell, said in a press conference in announcing the Digital Intelligence program.

The program, that was created by DQ Institute, targets to teach children eight main areas -- digital identity, use, safety, security, emotional intelligence, communication, literacy, and rights, according to the institute's website.

In Turkey, the DQ Institute's program was translated, adapted and provided by Turkcell.

Terzioğlu noted the chance Turkish children in being exposed to cyber risks is 47 percent, and Turkcell aims to minimize risks with the program.

"Children are exposed to phishing 35 times more than adults," he added.

Dr. Yuhyun Park, the founder of DQ Institute, said the program, which is a game-based education system, measures children's digital intelligence and includes families and schools in the learning process.

She said more than 50 percent of children are at risk in the world and they should learn how to use digital technologies safely.

DQ is composed of intelligence quotient (IQ), emotional quotient (EQ) and human values, she underlined.

"With its features, the DQ is the only one digital intelligence education content recognized by UNESCO," she noted.

She added that the program is used in 104 countries by around 700,000 children.

Fifty-six percent of 8- to 12-year-old children are exposed to cyber risks -- cyberbullying, online sexual behavior, game addiction, and online grooming -- according to the institute's report.

These figures are 78 percent in Oman and 73 percent in Singapore and Argentina.

The report stressed that 390 million aged 8-12 will be at risk by 2020.

"Global average of 32 hours of screen time per week for entertainment use alone," the report said.

The Digital Intelligence's Turkish version can be accessed through turkcell.com.tr/dijitalzeka address.

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