by Matt Marshall
So you’ve installed all the latest blocking software, you’ve banned MySpace and you only let your kids chat with their friends. You’ve completely eliminated any chance that an online predator can get to your kid, right?
There’s a sneaky trick some online predators are using to gain access to your kids and get them to give up their phone numbers.
To illustrate how an online predator runs this scheme, read the following story.
Jenny is 7 years old. Her older brother Mark (13 years old) picks on her all day long. Yesterday, Mark got a brand new computer game. It’s one of those games where you strap on a headset and can communicate with your friends as you play in “team mode”.
Jenny wanted to play so bad but Mark wouldn’t let her. He kept saying “Hey Jenny, want to play the game now?” She’d come running and Mark would yell “Too bad!”
But today, Mark had to go to karate practice. He’d be gone for two whole hours! And mom was downstairs cooking dinner.
She hopped on the computer and started up the game. Even though the controls were brand new she picked up on the game quickly.
She noticed that at the bottom of the game there was a box for instant messages. A new message popped up from somebody named JimmyFox44. He asked her old she was.
Somewhat annoyed (Jenny was trying to play the video game), she typed in “7” and closed the window. But a new instant message popped up. It was JimmyFox44 again… and this time he said “7? You’re too young to play this game”. She responded “No I’m not!”
He said “You’re so young, you probably don’t even know your phone number. You’re just a baby!”
To prove him wrong, she typed in her phone number and hit “send”.
“There”, she thought, “I showed him”.
95 miles away, JimmyFox44 smiled. In real life, Jimmy is a 44 year old ex-convict. And now he had his next victim. He smiled as he punched in the phone number into a reverse tracer program. Within seconds he’d have the address and household name.
Then he’d stake out the house, find out when the parents left and figure out the perfect time to swoop in and grab Jenny.
What Can You Do?
While the above story is fictional… it could happen to anyone. The only way to prevent something like this is to maintain complete awareness of what you’re kids are doing online.
Unfortunately, that’s not always possible. Because you can’t always be in the same room.
But with the use of good computer monitoring service, you can stay 100% aware of what your kids are doing online at all times. You’ll receive reports that detail every website visited, every instant message sent and receive, and every email that your child writes.
If the mother of “Jenny”, in the story above had a computer monitoring service, she would have seen a report detailing every word exchanged between Jenny and the internet predator.
But without any type of monitoring service, she would have never know until it was too late.
About the Author
Matt Marshall is the author of “Behind Your Back & Under Your Nose: What Your Kids Are Really Doing Online.” He teaches concerned parents how to protect their kids from online threats. To get your free report, please visit http://www.WhatEveryParentMustKnow.com.