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Weekly Briefing: 4-11 January 2019

Kids should not use screens in the hour before going to bed according to new guidelines

New official guidance from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health advises parents to not let their children use screens in the hour before they go to bed as it might disrupt their sleeping pattern, according to Huffington Post. The college said that the gadgets themselves did not pose a risk to children and that they could, in fact, be valuable tools, but that the time spent on them should be controlled.

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Snapchat adds new layer of security

The social media platform Snapchat is adding end-to-end encryption to its users’ messages and photos to ensure privacy if they are intercepted by hackers, according to The Telegraph. More than 16m people in the UK are currently using the popular app which has received criticism for not implementing the safety feature earlier. Platforms like WhatsApp and iMessage have had it for some time.

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Bing accused of not filtering out child sexual abuse images

A report by AntiToxin has found that Microsoft’s own search engine Bing does not filter out child sexual abuse images and has been giving search suggestions to paedophiles, according to The Telegraph. Microsoft described it as ‘unacceptable’ and said it had removed the images as soon as they had been reported and has promised to improve reporting mechanisms.

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The teenage 'white hat' hacker getting rich legally 

This BBC video tells the story of the teenager Sam Curry from Nebraska who is paid by companies to hack into their systems and detect weaknesses, making around $100,000 per year. Sam, who claims to have none of the skills sought after in conventional workplaces, works around 20 hours per week doing what is known as ‘white hat’ hacking or ethical hacking.

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Pupils to receive sleep lessons to combat child insomnia

The PSHE Association is planning to put in place sleep lessons for schoolchildren in an attempt to tackle insomnia caused by things like screen time, according to The Guardian. Insomnia in young people has been called a “hidden public health crisis” and the new lessons will be part of the PSHE curriculum aimed at seven to 16-year-olds.

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