Catching Online Predators Requires Awareness

The Web Safe Kid website, a premier resource for parents serious about keeping children safe while they are gradually beginning their online learning, studying, and socializing habits, advocates that a safe child is an aware child. The reality goes even further than this; catching online predators requires awareness as well: those of parents, caregivers, law enforcement, and of course the child her- or himself! In some cases, such awareness might even permit one child to save another’s life!

The insidious nature of anonymity on the World Wide Web makes it hard to successfully continue catching online predators and as law enforcement ups the ante with more sophisticated methods, so the perpetrators learn to adapt and much like cockroaches will they will learn new tricks and better ways to erase any traces of their activities.

At the root of safety, however, are the tried and true bits and pieces of advice that cannot be repeated often enough to kids: privacy is a vital component and while children will be chatting online and even making friends online, such friendships must strictly remain in cyberspace and not cross the line to include phone numbers, the exchange of addresses, and even worse, a divulging of parental work schedules or forecast absences from the home.

Catching online predators requires awareness, consistent teaching, but first and foremost parental training. As such, it is not sufficient to simply warn children that there are online predators, but it is vital that children know how they might act, and what they might ask the child to do.

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