- 8 updates
Peter Davies, Chief Executive at CEOP, has told Daybreak that children who are "most vulnerable" are more likely to be targeted by sex offenders online.
CEOP and NSPCC are encouraging parents and carers to talk to children about what they do online on Safer Internet Day tomorrow.
Accessing the internet and using mobile phones can put children at risk of:
- Seeing disturbing information or images
- Being the victim of online bullying (also known as cyberbullying)
- Being contacted and manipulated by an adult for sexual purposes (also known as grooming)
- Sharing personal and identifying information with strangers
- sending or receiving sexually explicit films, images or messages of themselves or others (this is known as sexting when sent by mobile phone)
To help keep your child safe online:
- Talk to your child about the dangers posed by the internet
- Tell them what they should do if they become worried or concerned
- Explain that anything shared online or by mobile phone could end up being seen by anyone
- Understand what your child does online and know which websites they visit
- Put the computer where the whole family can see it, not out of sight in a bedroom
- Use filtering software to block inappropriate sites
- Encourage your child to use websites such as ChildLine where they can find advice and guidance on safe (but fun) use of the internet
- According to figures from Ofcom, six out of ten 12 to 15 year olds now own a smart phone, and that the number has increased by a fifth in the past year.
- More than two-thirds of those do not have parental controls installed on their phones.
- CEOP also said that instant messaging on some phones is used by paedophiles to groom potential victims.
- It was used by offenders to make contact with children in around third of public reports of grooming in 2012/13.
Children are being groomed by paedophiles purely for online sexual abuse, experts have said today.
Sex offenders are targeting children so that they can watch them performing sexual acts over the internet.
The Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP) said that for these paedophiles, physical contact with the children does not appear to be a motivation.
It follows the conviction in December of two brothers in Kuwait who targeted 110 children worldwide, including 78 in the UK, and forced them into performing sexual acts online.
CEOP also said that of 1,145 reports of online grooming last year, just 7% related to trying to meet a child in person, a drop from 12% in 2011.