Child exploitation websites ‘crashing’ during coronavirus amid sharp rise in reported abuse
the average number of child exploitation reports it receives has increased from 776 per month to 1,731 per month.
“Data suggests the amount of child abuse material being shared on the dark net is increasing,
How best to protect children
To protect children online, parents and carers needed to be aware of the risks associated with children spending more time online due to the coronavirus pandemic.
According to research, only 52 per cent of parents or carers talk to their children about online safety.
“The most important tip we can give is to start talking to your child about their online activities,”
Parents were inadvertently being targeted and offered benefits in exchange for images.
“This can include fake ‘modeling’ offers in exchange for clothing or other benefits. Interactions often starts as requests for seemingly innocent images which evolve into asking for sexualized photos, or child exploitation material,”.
“There have been instances of offenders targeting parents or carers for access to children through social media.
“Parents or carers being offered free products, or their children being asked to model clothing, are some of the means being used to groom their children.
“A child can be groomed in a matter of minutes and some grooming operations are quite sophisticated. Police have seen offenders using multiple platforms, with multiple identities to groom as many children as possible.
“Supervision is recommended for younger children as well as encouraging your child to apply critical thinking skills, like questioning suspicious behavior or ‘friend’ requests from other users online.”