Sunday, April 23, 2006

Internet Predators

I'm no alarmist and I believe children are best protected from the dangers of our modern world through proper education and the imparting of knowledge.

However, there are children who aren't even surfing the Internet and they're in danger - because their parents unwittingly (and lovingly, I might add) post their pictures on the Internet.

The following article by Rose DesRochers throws a chilling light on online competitions calling for children's pics. The competitions themselves may be legit but what predators can do with the pics and info posted there is scary:

Also consider that Internet connectivity is no longer restricted to computers. Anyone with a GPRS-enabled mobile phone (most of which have a built-in camera) can surf the Internet, post to a blog, engage in chat with complete strangers, post intimate pictures to a site or send them to another mobile phone, etc.

Recently, India woke up to the dangers of too much technology in the hands of children and too much exposure to MTV Grind when a 16 y/o boy sent an MMS of his girlfriend (casual) performing oral sex with him to his classmates. About a year ago I read of people engaging in casual sex by "surfing" nearby ready and willing participants through the bluetooth technology in-bult in most modern mobile phones (this was in the UK). It's as easy as sending a "wanna f**k?" message into mobile cyberspace and then linking up with anyone within range who responds.

Only knowledge - full knowledge - can protect children.

Are we geared to handle it?