Experts remind parents to take a deeper look at technology-based toys

BLACKSBURG, Va. – As we get into the heart of the holiday season, we’ve been working for you to ensure the toys you are getting your children are safe.

Toys with advanced technology, also known as smart toys, are becoming more popular every year.

Examples of these toys could be a teddy bear that responds to your child or a robot doll that teaches your child a new task.

Though experts at Virginia Tech said these can be great teaching tools for children, they want to remind parents there are some precautions to take.

“There are a lot of positives with smart toys,” said France Belanger, an accounting and information expert at Virginia Tech. “They do teach kids a lot so it is more about parents being vigilant, knowing what data is collected, how it’s collected, who has access to it, and what they can do about it.”

She said before buying the toy, check to see if there is a microphone or camera, check reviews online about privacy concerns, and read the toy’s manual for any potential data collection.

About the Author

Thomas grew up right here in Roanoke and is a graduate of Salem High School and Virginia Tech.

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