Social media addicts need counseling

Updated 02 October 2013
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Social media addicts need counseling

The excessive use of social media by young Saudi men and women has prompted experts to call for setting up counseling centers to treat the addiction that can cause road accidents and negligence in work and studies.
“We need counseling centers to treat social media addicts,” said Dr. Nizar Al-Saleh, a psychologist and secretary-general of the National Center for Youth Research at King Saud University. “Such centers can be found in Western countries.”
He stressed the importance of setting up specialized counseling centers not only to treat social media addiction but also to tackle issues like excess use of electronic games, anti-social behavior and illegal use of weapons.
He proposed the setting up of small research-cum-treatment centers in various parts of the Kingdom, especially at shopping malls to find solutions to these social problems. “People should be given counseling on how to get rid of such behavior and addictions,” he pointed out.
“We should also make use of modern communication means including mobile phones and iPhones to enhance public awareness on such issues and help people get rid of inappropriate social behavior.”
Saudis are considered the largest users of social media platforms in the Arab world.
Speaking about negative effects of social media, Dr. Al-Saleh said it could cause depression and anxiety and encourage people to become introverts, keeping them away from interacting with others in real life.
According to one study on social networks, Saudi Arabia ranked first in the Middle East.


Australia says foreign government behind cyberattack on lawmakers

Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison. (AFP)
Updated 18 February 2019
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Australia says foreign government behind cyberattack on lawmakers

  • Morrison did not name any suspects, but analysts have said China, Russia and Iran were the most likely culprits

SYDNEY: A cyberattack on Australian lawmakers that breached the networks of major political parties was probably carried out by a foreign country, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday, without naming any suspects.
As Australia heads for an election due by May, lawmakers were told this month told to urgently change their passwords after the cyber intelligence agency detected an attack on the national parliament’s computer network.
The hackers breached the networks of Australia’s major political parties, Morrison said, as he issued an initial assessment by investigators.
“Our cyber experts believe that a sophisticated state actor is responsible for this malicious activity,” he told parliament.
“We also became aware that the networks of some political parties, Liberal, Labor and Nationals have also been affected.”
Morrison did not reveal what information was accessed, but he said there was no evidence of election interference.
Australians will return to the polls by May.
Morrison did not name any suspects, but analysts have said China, Russia and Iran were the most likely culprits.
“When you consider motivation, you would have to say that China is the leading suspect, while you wouldn’t rule out Russia either,” said Fergus Hanson, head of the International Cyber Policy Center at think-tank the Australian Strategic Policy Institute.
“It is the honey-pot of juicy political gossip that has been hoovered up. Emails showing everything from the dirty laundry of internal fights through to who supported a policy could be on display.”
Ties with China have deteriorated since 2017, after Canberra accused Beijing of meddling in its domestic affairs. Both countries have since sought to mend relations, but Australia remains wary of China.
Tension rose this month after Australia rescinded the visa of a prominent Chinese businessman, just months after barring Chinese telecoms giant Huawei Technologies from supplying equipment to its 5G broadband network.
Officers of Russia’s GRU military intelligence agency covertly monitored computers of US Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and campaign committees, and stole large amounts of data, US investigators have concluded.