Easy Tiger Parent System™

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Jennifer McLeod

How Do You Stop Or Deal With Manipulative Parents?

Born To Win!: Success Strategies for Young Businesses and New Entrepreneurs

27 July 2010

The Internet - Playground for Paedophiles

Over the past few weeks, this blog has explored the dangers of the internet, how to prevent children from being cyber-bullied and how to react to cyber-bullying. Moreover, safety measures related to internet security have been identified as to make the online experience a positive experience for children. In connection to this, today's blog further emphasises the importance of the discussed safety features as the internet is an ever growing playground for paedophilia.
The case of Jon Venables who at the age of ten along with his friend Robert Thompson committed the murder of James Bulgar, shows that these offenders are disturbed individuals who in any case have to be taken very serious. Moreover, the latest news around Venables exhibit how important it is for children to be taught and follow certain internet security regulations and advice in order for them to be safe. Child pornography and child abuse have been increasingly on the rise making it even easier for paedophiles to download, share and distribute pornographic material of children.  P2P sharing (websites which make it possible for its users to exchange files) have made the material accessible worldwide. The internet provides them with the necessary anonymity and conceals their true identity. This is particularly dangerous for children and teenagers.
The real danger lies in chat rooms and instant messaging. Teenagers and even younger children are naturally curious and chatty individuals who seem to have the constant urge to share information, the latest gossip and social news. However, their naive and gullible nature makes them easily approachable in chat rooms by strangers. Only recently has a 12 year old girl been talked into practicing sexual acts on herself by a 43 year-old man who pretended to be a 14 year-old teenage boy. The paedophilic delinquent moreover asked the girl to meet him in person. He could however be stopped thanks to the interference of a friend of the youngster who told the girl's mother what has been happening. The man was trialled and sentenced for four years imprisonment.
This last minute rescue has saved the girl from further violation. Many of similar cases and scenarios, on the other hand, have worse outcomes. Therefore, it is ever more so important for parents to keep track of their children's activity online. Children and teenagers are in the vulnerable position of entering inferior positions with superior individuals who take advantage of the internet's anonymity. They often trust their chat partner easily and blindly, believing that the person on the other side of the connections is as reliable and honest as themselves overlooking the fact that the chat partner's intentions may not be honourable.
Prevention is better than cure. Educate your children on the anonymity of the internet and how it could be a serious danger to their well-being. As much as the internet is an excellent learning and social platform, it is also the meeting point and source of material for paedophiles. Their creativity is unfortunately inexhaustible and so are their ways of encouraging their victims to fulfil their sexual demands. Any sexual comments or references made by an adult to a minor qualify as delinquent behaviour and should immediately and with no delay be reported to the police.
Remember that the safety, security and comfort of your children are priorities during their online experience. As encouraged last week, parents should direct their children's attention and knowledge to what is acceptable online behaviour and what is not. Parents should know who their children talk to on the internet and convince their children to ideally converse only with people they properly know, i.e. school mates, friends, etc. Even if it makes children uncomfortable, they should be encouraged to talk about their chat room "friends" and directly report odd, uncomfortable and offensive behaviour back to their parents

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