Special Report: Stranger Danger (Pt. 3)
Submitted by WWAY on Thu, 11/29/2007 - 11:24am.READ MORE: Special Report: Stranger Danger (Pt. 3)
View part 1
and part 2
of our Special Report: Stranger Danger
WILMINGTON -- Child predators no longer lurk outside playgrounds, trying to get your child alone. Now, they come into your home.
Despite all the locks and alarms you may have they can still get inside, thanks to the internet.
When Melissa Kirkby looked at the MySpace page of one of her daughter's friends she was shocked.
The World Wide Web is a tool where children can openly express themselves. But what they share online could be seen by someone waiting to prey on them.
If that isn't scary enough, or proof enough for a parent, there was another study in 2005 that said 77 percent of parents did not have rules about the internet.
So how do you give your child guidelines about the internet that they will follow?
Child psychologist Scott Crowder said, "If your teen really wants a MySpace page, let's sit down and look at MySpace. I'd like you to show me the pictures you'd like to put on MySpace, and I'd like to see your friend list. Let's look at your friends' pages.
Both child psychologist Scott Crowder and detectives with the New Hanover County sheriff's office say communication is key.
As for Melissa, she allows her children some internet freedom, but she does not allow her son or daughter access to MySpace and Facebook.
She and her husband also keep a close eye on what sites her children visit so their children won't be the target of a predator.
There's another way to monitor what your children do online.
You can pick up a free computer disk called "computer cop" at local sheriff offices and police departments. It will tell you what websites and chat rooms have been visited by that computer.
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