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Internet Child Safety

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A new law at the statehouse allows prosecution of child predators for possessing child erotica, suggestive nude photos of children.
Investigators say this will help them crack down on a growing problem.

Detective Kevin Murphy with the Berkeley county Sheriff's Office was recently awarded one of four awards nationwide for work to fight internet child abuse.

He said parents think walking in the room to check on their child when online is enough. In one female Lowcountry victim's video, he could see what looked like a mother pop her head in the room and then leave, "everything is okay here. And close the door and the child just picked up where she left off doing the same thing with this individual."

The predator then spread a recording of that video online worldwide as child pornography.
Murphy says there are websites that destroy a photo after just seconds. Some kids don't realize a predator can grab that photo before it disappears to distribute the photo everywhere.

There are numerous websites that parents might not even be aware of, "they just randomly connect you with other people who have video cameras. And about every third person on there is a pervert exposing himself."

He says sometimes not just the predator that instigates the crime, but many, many other predators can view these videos live.

He said one lowcountry victim, a young boy, was found on video on a website and, "five or six pages full of IP addresses that connected to this little boy during the course of time he was doing this."

And many photos have geo data stored on them, which tells the predator where the photo was taken. "They can know where the child is, to track the child down."

"Giving your child unrestricted access to the Internet which includes tablets laptops PCs and cellular phones with data capability... to me is just tantamount to dropping them off in the worst city at the worst street corner and just saying to them, 'I'll meet you here at 9 o'clock tomorrow at the same street corner.'"

Murphy suggests several things you can do:
  • Never give your child unrestricted access to the internet.
  • Use settings or software to block out times you want your child to have access to the computer.
  • Buy software that filters certain sites or software from their computer altogether, and allows you to monitor what they viewed.
Because Murphy says if those photos or videos get taken and distributed by criminals, "It doesn't go away. It reproduces faster than rabbits. And it travels as fast as the speed of light. Once it gets out there, you will never get it back. You never, ever get it back."
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