Lord Sugar urges parents to 'take a stance' on excessive smartphone use

Lord Alan Sugar
Lord Alan Sugar

Technology tycoon Lord Sugar has revealed he has banned his grandchildren from using their smartphones at the dinner table and urged parents to follow suit.

The Apprentice star stressed the need to stop youngsters "spending too much time gazing into these devices" and warned while the internet can be "a wonderful thing", it can also be "a very dangerous tool".

The billionaire entrepreneur also said internet users needed to "get over" what he dubbed the "Big Brother syndrome" and accept that they were "digitally marked".

And he argued online providers had a responsibility to help the security services tackle terrorists and criminals operating in cyberspace.

The Amstrad founder said the Government should be able to force internet giants to dedicate "serious technical resource" in combating the threat.

Lord Sugar, who sits as a non-affiliated peer after quitting the Labour Party in 2015, made his comments during a debate on digital understanding in the House of Lords.

The businessman received a small cheer from other peers when he announced the action he had taken to curb the use of technology at mealtimes.

He said: "I have seven grandchildren and on the very odd occasion that I am blessed with them coming to my home to have dinner around the table, their faces are buried in their smartphones to such an extent that I have banned them from the dining room.

"It can't be right. There is something wrong with the young in society today and I urge parents to take a stance to prevent their children spending too much time gazing into these devices.

"The internet is a wonderful thing, but it also can be a very dangerous tool."