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Study: 70 Percent Of Parents Monitor Kids’ Facebook Accounts, Nearly Half Have Passwords

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A new study finds that 70 percent of parents keep a watchful eye on their own children’s Facebook accounts, and 46 percent reported having their kids' passwords.  (ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/GettyImages)

A new study finds that 70 percent of parents keep a watchful eye on their own children’s Facebook accounts, and 46 percent reported having their kids’ passwords. (ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/GettyImages)

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WASHINGTON (CBS DC) – A new study finds that 70 percent of parents keep a watchful eye on their own children’s Facebook accounts, and 46 percent reported having their kids’ passwords.

In the 11th year of the Facebook parent-to-child study, the University of Southern California’s Annenberg Center for the Digital Future found that while parents may be keeping tabs on their kids’ social media accounts, a large percentage (30 percent) trust them to manage their own digital accounts.

“It’s every parent’s dilemma to know when to trust their children,” wrote Jeffrey Cole, director of the center, via press release. “In the last five years, we have seen many new issues about parenting and technology evolve that previous generations never encountered.”

A 2012 Pew Internet & American Life Project survey found that 47 percent of parents were “very concerned” about their child’s exposure to inappropriate content through the internet or cell phones. Similarly, the same study showed 45 percent of parents expressing high levels of concern about the way “teens in general treat each other online or on their cell phones.”

The recent USC study found that only 12 percent said checking up on their kids “would show lack of trust.” Parents surveyed also responded that they believe the appropriate age for mobile phones is 13, and 15 is the age in which kids should create a Facebook account.

Sixteen percent of parents surveyed said they were not more invested in their kids’ social media habits because they were either too busy or they did not know how to utilize a Facebook account.

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