Protecting from Sexual Abuse: Keeping Kids Safe on the Internet

Stop It Now! is a terrifically resourceful organization dedicated to preventing sexual child abuse. The source linked at the bottom of this post provides valuable information related to sexual child abuse via the internet.

Thousands of children are exploited on the internet each year. Pedophiles and sex traffickers use the naivety of kids and preteens to their advantage. It does not take long for them to move in on their target, either. Manipulation is simple over the web: a predator’s true identity is completely hidden.

I once attended a seminar on internet safety. A sample chat room conversation was presented: it had been between a predator and an officer posing as a 14 year old girl. Within a few minutes of chat time, the predator was making explicit requests for sexual favors. He even promised to be a good father if the girl became pregnant, just to gain her trust.

Not only that, once a pornographic image of a child is released onto the web, it is impossible to erase it; that child will continue to be exploited and violated with each click over the coming years. And, since most tweens and teens have easy access to the internet almost 24/7, it has become a very real, difficult challenge for parents to keep them safe.

Never assume that what your kids (or you) are doing on-line is risk-free. Children have been sexually abused through the verbal communication of instant messaging, texting, or chat rooms. Some have been abducted by the “friend” they met on-line. Others have made contact with what they believed to be a modeling agency, only to be forced into pornographic films and photography.

Link to Stop It Now! UK and Ireland: “The Internet and Children: What’s the Problem?”
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