A THIRD of teens spend more than six hours a day online, a report says.
But experts reckon it is “futile” to try to protect them from all internet risks.
The study also warned that secretive youngsters increasingly use private groups rather than public profiles when online.
The research by the Education Policy Institute think-tank found 37 per cent of British 15-year-olds are now “extreme internet users” — online for more than six hours a day outside school hours.
And 95 per cent of them used sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat before or after school in 2015.
Among the 35 countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, only kids in Chile spent more time on the net.
The Institute said a third of teens in Britain had experienced cyber-bullying or seen harmful web content.
But it said innovations such as live streaming meant it was all but impossible to protect them from every danger.
Instead officials should focus on teaching them “resilience”. The report also said social media can improve social skills and help develop character.
Emily Frith, of the EPI, said: “Social media, when used in moderation, can have a beneficial impact on young people.
“Our research highlights the importance of equipping young people with skills that help counter emerging online risks.