Safety Watch Q&A: Child Exploitation - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Safety Watch Q&A: Child Exploitation

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As parents, we worry about things like bullying online, but Washoe County Sheriff's Detectives say child exploitation over the internet should be a big concern as well.

Washoe County Detective Sergeant Dennis Carry - who's part of the Cyber Crimes Unit - will offer tips for parents - and have more on how child exploitation is being addressed locally.

To learn more about the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force - call 858-2222 between 5pm and 6pm.

From Washoe County:

The Washoe County Sheriff's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force conducts online investigations targeting child pornographers and sexual predators of children. Washoe County Detectives work with members of the FBI, Customs (ICE), and various other law enforcement agencies.

Children are being sexually exploited, kidnapped, molested and solicited by individuals using online services. One reason is the anonymous nature of the Internet. Another reason is the large number of people using the Internet. On-Line Child Predators contact children on the Internet through E-mail messages, Instant Messages, electronic bulletin boards (BBS) and public chat rooms.

There are a number of ways parents can protect their children from becoming victims of these predators on the Internet.
* Choose an online service that offers parental control features.
* Purchase blocking software and design your own safety system.
* Monitor your children online and monitor the time they spend online.
* Ensure children never reveal identifying information about themselves on the Internet, in a public chat room, on an electronic bulletin board or in their E-mail messages.
* Ensure children do not give out personal information about themselves such as their age.
* Get to know the services your child uses.
* Block out objectionable material through your Internet Service Provider (ISP).
* Never allow a child to arrange a face-to-face meeting with another computer user without parental permission.
* Ensure children never respond to messages or bulletin board items that are suggestive, obscene, belligerent or threatening. Encourage your children to tell you whenever they encounter such messages.
* If you or your children receive a message that is harassing, sexual in nature, or threatening, forward a copy of the message to your ISP and ask for their assistance.
* Teach your children that people online may not be who they seem.
* Teach your children that online service providers never ask for passwords and they should never give their password out.
* Teach your children to never let anyone pressure them into doing something they feel uncomfortable doing.
* Some children have access to the Internet at school. Check with the school authorities to ensure your children are properly supervised and monitored by a responsible adult.
* Know your children's friends and their parents.
* Set reasonable rules for computer use by your children. Discuss the rules with your children and post them near the computer as a reminder. 

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