Are Skype and other social sites safe for Children?

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The internet has long been viewed as the next best thing after cable TV. Access to plenty of entertainment, information and communication are some of the perks that come with being internet savvy. However, when the same internet poses harm to us and our children, its time to rethink how we use it and the kind of information we enter into our social sites and email communications.Man on computer

20-yr old predator communicated with his 11-yr old victim online via Skype.
(Nic MacBean, file photo: ABC News)

This has become especially evident in recent times when reports of child molestation over the internet have sparked warnings and calls to upgrade security measures online. In Australia, a man was charged when he tried to get a child to send him nude photos of himself. The 20 year old man initiated communication with his 11 year old victim over Skype and in an online game, where he supposedly “groomed” the boy. Thanks to the mother’s constant monitoring of her son’s computer communications, she discovered what was going on on time. This has obviously raised new concerns about the safety of online communication, especially for kids.

Skype, Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites where one can send photographs have been termed in recent research as avenues through which child sexual abuse is carried out. When children go online, they do not have the foresight to be cautious, making them easy prey for predators. While this is all old news because of this kind of thing happening regularly, it is precisely because it happens so frequently that this cannot be overemphasised. Keep your children away from social sites until they can make safe decisions, or train them n how to be safe online. If all else fails, get rid of the computer in their room.

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Author: Elizabeth Njuguna

I enjoy freelance writing as well as filmmaking. Documentaries and feature stories are my favorite genre. Telling stories is my niche :)

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