Prince William has shared his greatest fear for his children: cyber bullying.
Father to Prince George, 2, and Princess Charlotte, 1, the Prince said at the London 2016 Founders Forum that he is ‘appalled’ at the damage the Internet can do to children.
‘As Catherine and I started our family a few years ago, I was alarmed about the increasing reports of online bullying that were making headlines around the world,’ he said.
'From the girls developing eating disorders after being subjected to a campaign of abuse on social media, to the teenage boys who took their own lives following constant targeting – as a parent myself, I was appalled.’
Bullying isn’t the same as it used to be, Prince William added.
'What we were seeing was that social media and messaging had transformed bullying from something that was not only the torment of the classroom and playground, but something that followed you home as well – to the one safe haven that children should have.'
Despite his fears, Prince Williams said he’d ‘struggle’ without his smart phone ‘for news, sports, music and the odd bit of gaming.’
‘Technology is a big part of my working life, too. As an air ambulance pilot, I love the fact that the helicopter I fly is fitted out with some of the life-saving medical equipment; and I consider social media to be central to how the Royal Family communicates in the 21st century.’
This time next year, Prince William said he hopes to see better security online for children.
'We have a lot of work ahead of us, but by this time next year we expect to have a plan in place to achieve fundamental improvements in online safety for bullied children.'