The safety of children is of paramount importance, but without any real evidence that having a phone will help, marketing a phone for this reason is extremely misleading and may put your child at greater risk.
There is no evidence that mobile communication makes children any safer. If someone kidnaps a child, the first thing to go would be the mobile phone, so even if the child had managed to get out an SOS signal, there is no way that anyone could get to the location of the phone before the kidnappers are long gone. Phones which use an automatically generated map of the phone’s location are usually too imprecise to identify the exact position of the child.
In January 2006, the Sunday Times reported a rise of about 12 percent in muggings. Police blame the increase mainly on “teen-on-teen” crimes in which children attack each other for desirable items such as mobile phones. In April 2007, the police said that more than 50% of street theft in the last year involved a mobile phone. In February 2010 the BBC said that 228 mobile phones are reported stolen in the UK every hour. The Metropolitan Police say as many as 10,000 mobile phones are stolen every month. Two thirds of the victims are aged between 13 and 16. The research shows that children under 15 are the most common targets with up to half a million young people aged between 11 and 15 falling victim to phone theft.