Invisible Preadators: Hidden Dangers of the Internet


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This powerpoint explores where kids/teens are in the most danger online and strives to educate parents about the dangers of online profile sites like Myspace and Facebook. Parents will be shown how an online predator can use the information posted by the child to stalk the child online and in real life. Realistic safety tips are provided at the program's conclusion.

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Invisible Preadators: Hidden Dangers of the Internet

  1. 1. Invisible Predators: Hidden Dangers of the Internet Presented By: Malissa Martino PASSAGES, Inc.
  2. 2. Topics for Today Introduction Danger Areas The Online Predator Keeping Kids Safe Your Questions
  3. 3. Introduction of the Problem
  4. 4. What’s Happening Online? <ul><li>Spring 2002: Connecticut </li></ul><ul><ul><li>13 year old Christina Long becomes the first murder victim because of </li></ul></ul><ul><li>February 2006: Connecticut </li></ul><ul><ul><li>7 teenage girls are sexually assaulted by men they met on </li></ul></ul><ul><li>June 2006: Michigan </li></ul><ul><ul><li>16 year old Katherine Lester agrees to fly to Israel to meet a 20 year old man that she met on authorities intercept her in Jordan </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. To Catch A Predator… <ul><li>Popular Series on NBC that strives to catch online predators using decoys </li></ul><ul><li>In 10 episodes they have caught 200 offenders </li></ul><ul><li>The series nabbed several offenders who were wanted for past crimes as well </li></ul><ul><li>Many problems as a result of this series for law enforcement </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Website used by Dateline NBC in the “To Catch A Predator” Series </li></ul><ul><li>Chats with the predators are posted on the website for all to view </li></ul><ul><li>PROBLEM: PJ does not verify that the person they post the picture of is really a predator </li></ul><ul><li>PROBLEM: May interfere with law enforcement already working on a particular predator </li></ul>
  7. 7. How big is the problem? <ul><li>1 in 7 children are sexually solicited online EVERYDAY </li></ul><ul><li>1 in 3 children are exposed to pornographic images online EVERYDAY </li></ul><ul><li>An estimated 80% of convicted sex offenders have access to a computer and are online DAILY </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>SOURCE: National Center for Missing and Exploited Children </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Danger Areas
  9. 9. Where are children/teens in the most danger online? <ul><li>Chat sites </li></ul><ul><ul><li>ICQ, MSN Messenger, Yahoo Messenger, AIM, TAG </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Profile Sites </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Myspace, Facebook, Livejournal, Xanga </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Online Games </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Runescape </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. What kind of information is posted intentionally? ► Name ► Address ► Phone Number ► Email Address ► School ► Favorite Activities ► Special Messages to Friends Dubois Area Senior High School Public school · Grades 9-12 · 1412 students 425 Orient Ave, Du Bois, PA 15801 (814) 371-8111 District: Dubois Area School District Dubois Area Middle School Public school · Grades 6-8 · 1052 students 404 Liberty Blvd, Du Bois, PA 15801 (814) 375-8770 District: Dubois Area School District                           
  11. 11. Too much information… <ul><li>Children and teens willingly post information about themselves online </li></ul><ul><li>Most online profile sites offer very little in the way of protection of the information that is posted by users </li></ul><ul><li>Facebook is the “safest” online profile site for teens to use </li></ul>
  12. 12. Sex Offenders and <ul><li> has found 744 registered sex offenders with profiles </li></ul><ul><li>Edwin Hall, arrested for the June 2007 murder of Kelsey Smith, listed favorite pastimes on his account as: “Eating small children and harming animals.” </li></ul><ul><li>Little is being done to delete and/or monitor suspected sex offender profiles </li></ul>
  13. 13. Attitudes <ul><li>“ It can’t happen to me” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’m smarter than adults online” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I would know if I was being cyber-stalked” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Parents are paranoid” </li></ul>
  14. 14. Who are the victims of Internet sex crimes? <ul><li>Most are teenagers 12-17 (approximately 30% being male) </li></ul><ul><li>Most know they’re getting involved in a sexual relationship with an adult </li></ul><ul><li>The offenders typically play the most important role in the development of these relationships </li></ul>Stats from University of New Hampshire National Study, October 2001-July 2002
  15. 15. Teens most vulnerable… <ul><li>Have poor relationships with parents (Adolescent girls who report high degree of conflict with their parents, boys who report low parental monitoring) </li></ul><ul><li>Suffer from loneliness or depression (Teens turning to the Internet to alleviate their loneliness) </li></ul><ul><li>Are gay or questioning boys (Boys who use the Internet to seek out information about homosexuality) </li></ul><ul><li>Compliant or Statutory Victims (Those victims who actually cooperate with offenders and develop strong sexual attachments to them) </li></ul>
  16. 16. The Online Predator
  17. 17. How the online predator works… <ul><li>Victim Selection </li></ul><ul><li>Survey of Family Dynamics </li></ul><ul><li>Introduction to Secrecy </li></ul><ul><li>Introduction to Adult Materials/Porn </li></ul><ul><li>Offline Contact </li></ul><ul><li>The Face-to-Face Meeting </li></ul>Source: Julie Posey
  18. 18. Victim Selection <ul><li>Initial contact with the victim is made </li></ul><ul><li>Information provided in a profile is verified either through asking the child questions and/or searching the Internet for information </li></ul>
  19. 19. Survey of Family Dynamics <ul><li>Predator seeks to learn who the child lives with and what kind of supervision is at the home </li></ul>
  20. 20. Introduction to Secrecy <ul><li>“ You can’t tell anyone because no one will understand how much we care about each other.” </li></ul><ul><li>The predator may teach the child how to erase materials and hide information on the computer. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Introduction to Adult Materials/Pornography <ul><li>It is very common for the predator to show pornography or erotic materials to the child </li></ul><ul><li>This wears down the child’s inhibitions and show the child that sex acts between a child and adult are “normal” </li></ul><ul><li>The child may also be encouraged to take sexually explicit photos of himself to share with the predator </li></ul>
  22. 22. Offline Contact <ul><li>Initial offline contact is usually made through the phone, preferably a cell phone </li></ul><ul><li>Conversations continue to become more sexual in phone chats </li></ul><ul><li>The predator may also mail the child “gifts” of inappropriate items. </li></ul>
  23. 23. The Face-to-Face Meeting <ul><li>The predator will arrange a meeting with the child with the intent of assaulting him/her </li></ul><ul><li>The child often willingly agrees to this meeting because they believe they have made a new “friend” </li></ul>
  24. 24. The Online Predator <ul><li>Describe the typical online predator… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Age? Race? Profession? Appearance? Married or Single? </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Offenders: Who are they? <ul><li>There is no one “profile” of an online predator </li></ul><ul><li>Offenders are: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Married, divorced, single </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ages 14-70 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wealthy, poor, middle class </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many are involved with children and teens because they live with them, work with them, or volunteer with groups that provide activities for youth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Source: PA Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  26. 26. Who is the Online Predator?
  27. 27. Inaccurate Stereotype <ul><li>The offenders in these types of crimes do not appear to be pedophiles. Pedophilia is a sexual deviation involving sexual attraction to prepubescent children. </li></ul><ul><li>99% of Internet victims are ages 13-17 </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Source: PA Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  28. 28. Inaccurate Stereotype <ul><li>The offenders in Internet-initiated crimes do not generally deceive victims about being older adults who are interested in sexual relationships </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Source: PA Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  29. 29. Inaccurate Stereotype <ul><li>Offenders do not use force or coercion to sexually abuse their victims and don’t abduct them </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Teens typically agree to meet the adult knowing their sexual interest </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Source: PA Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  30. 30. Inaccurate Stereotype <ul><li>It is misleading to characterize the offenders in these cases as strangers . </li></ul><ul><li>Most offenders communicate extensively with victims, both online and off before they actually meet in person. </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Source: PA Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  31. 31. Keeping Kids Safe
  32. 32. BASIC Internet Safety Tips <ul><li>Keep the computer in a common area </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t use chat rooms </li></ul><ul><li>No MySpace profiles </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t talk to strangers </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t give out personal information </li></ul><ul><li>Monitor what your children do online </li></ul>
  33. 33. REALISTIC Internet Safety Tips <ul><li>Set profiles to private </li></ul><ul><li>No pictures online </li></ul><ul><li>Do not talk with someone you do not personally know </li></ul>
  34. 34. Reporting Online Solicitations <ul><li>Cybertipline was established by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to handle reports of online solicitations of children </li></ul><ul><li> or call 1-800-843-5678 </li></ul>
  35. 35. Check these sites out! <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Visit profile and chat sites! </li></ul>
  36. 36. As others see it…
  37. 37. Questions? For More Information: Malissa Martino PASSAGES, Inc. 1-800-793-3620 or 814-371-9677 [email_address]