Predators Use Cell Phones to Victimize Children

TOPEKA, Kan. - Many parents have begun checking on their children's online activity to keep them safe from predators, but some may not be aware the danger has spread from the computer to cell phones.

The Kansas Attorney General's Office is aware of the trend and says it's something they've recently been working to raise awareness about.

"Cell phones are great in allowing parents to keep up with their kids in event of an emergency. But I think parents need to keep track of how dangerous they can be," said Attorney General Steve Six.

Predators are getting ahold of kids' cell phone numbers and sending pictures or texts to their phones.

"Kids need to be careful because even on sites like MySpace or Facebook, sometimes kids will put their phone numbers up there or put information up there that will allow people to get ahold of personal information to get a kid's cell phone number," Six said.

Six says it's important for parents to be aware of their kids' phone behavior, and help make sure they're not giving out their personal numbers to anyone but friends. Also, know what kinds of messages they're sending and receiving.

"Kids use shorthand letters and if you're not texting all the time, many parents don't even know what some of the messages say," Six said. "So you don't know if you should be concerned. With our Netsafe Kansas website you can look up acronyms and abbreviations and it tells you which kids are using in their text messages."

The Attorney General's Office has set up Netsafe Kansas to also give parents tips about how to be safe on the internet. You can also call the Attorney General's Office at 800-432-2310.


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