How are children influenced to spend online?
The desire to make money online can be strong among teenagers, especially during the holiday season. Social media platforms such as TikTok amplify this desire by showcasing individuals or influencers claiming to have fortunes from online ventures like dropshipping, retail arbitrage or selling on Etsy.
They often paint a picture of quick and easy success, typically glossing over the challenges and realities of such endeavors.
What are the potential risks of young people finding quick ways to make or save money online?
While the internet offers legitimate opportunities for earning, it’s crucial for young people and their guardians to understand the potential risks involved. The following are some key risks to consider.
Falling prey to scams
There are plenty of scams online, from courses that promise to teach you how to make quick money to fraudulent investment opportunities. Teens, often less experienced in spotting these dangers, are at risk of financial loss.
Engaging in unregulated markets
Cryptocurrency trading can be tempting, but these markets are typically unregulated and volatile. Influencers on Instagram and TikTok often showcase quick cash gains from trading, potentially making others feel left out. This is particularly dangerous for teenagers unfamiliar with these markets.
Compromising personal information
Online money-making often requires sharing personal information. This can put teens at risk of identity theft if their sensitive data, such as bank details, fall into the wrong hands.
Overspending on deceptive deals
Websites promoting cheap items can be misleading, leading to purchases of low-quality products or encounters with fraudulent sellers. For example, there are many individuals on social media platforms showing how they buy items on Temu and re-sell them on eBay at a higher price.
However, they often fail to reveal the level of competition for these items and how such behavior can result in a banned eBay account. This results in feelings of betrayal and disappointment.
The continuous pursuit of online financial gains can lead to stress, anxiety and a distorted view of money management, impacting teens’ overall wellbeing and mental health.
Additionally, teens may fall into the misconception that making money is quick and easy, leading to unrealistic expectations and a distorted understanding of how money-making actually works. This can have long-term effects on their financial habits and decision-making.
How can parents help teens navigate these risks?
- Educate both yourself and teens about online scams and the importance of financial literacy.
- Approach online opportunities with caution, and always research thoroughly before engaging.
- Protect personal information vigilantly.
Keep open lines of communication regarding the realities and pressures of online financial endeavors.