I met a diverse group of people earlier today and one of the interesting debates that we touched upon was - "Should Children be encouraged to secure their family's PC(s)".
In my experience there seem to be two schools of thought:
- firstly that generally speaking Children are far more able to secure computers than their parents - of course there are notable exceptions to this arguement when their parents are IT Professionals / Developers / enthusiasts. Of course it may not be in their interest to "secure" the machine depending upon what that means!
- secondly that parents should manage the system(s) restrict the browsing and software habits of their Children - there are numerous challenges with this approach IMHO in that such parents either have to become (and maintain an appropriate level) of tech savvy OR trust an off-the-shelf package which their Children may find ways to circumvent particularly as attack tools and thinking develops.
Personally I don't like either approach. I think that parents should instill responsible behaviour in their Children whereby they consider and take responsibility for their actions - this sounds like a panacea written by someone who's not a parent (me). I accept that there's a certain minimum age whereby such responsiblity can be introduced. IMHO the principles of "right" and "wrong" are no different for deeds carried out via electronic means as those by traditional methods.
WHAT DO YOU THINK? HIT THE "COMMENT BUTTON" and share your opinion. I'm sure that common sense is needed and that neither approach would work taken literally without compromise.
I read a frightening statistic recently (I'd give credit to the author but I can't remember where I read it) as to the massive number of digital music players that have been sold contrasted to the relatively small number of music downloads purchased. Just think of how many Children you see wandering around listening to these devices and ask yourself where the music came from. Typical devices hold thousands of tracks. I'm not suggesting that every Child with a digital music player is listening to music they (or their parents) didn't purchase but rather am questioning the awareness/acceptance that copying a friend's collection is wrong.
BTW: Of course many Adults (myself included) enjoy digital music too but hopefully we can assume they know that commercial music should be purchased rather than copied.