Podcast: An update on online predator danger

While lots of adults get caught up in online predator sting operations, relatively few are arrested for soliciting actual kids.

There has been a dramatic growth in arrests of online predators who solicit undercover police officers, but--on a percentage basis--a significant decrease in arrests for soliciting actual kids, according to a study released Tuesday by the Crimes Against Children Research Center at the University of New Hampshire.

During a period where Internet use among youth increased from 73 percent to 93 percent, there was only a modest (21 percent) nationwide increase in the number of individuals arrested for soliciting real children from 508 arrests in 2000 to 615 in 2006.

To put this study into perspective and to help parents and policymakers better protect kids, I spoke with the center's director, David Finkelhor.


About the author

Larry Magid is a technology journalist and an Internet safety advocate. He's been writing and speaking about Internet safety since he wrote Internet safety guide "Child Safety on the Information Highway" in 1994. He is co-director of ConnectSafely.org, founder of SafeKids.com and SafeTeens.com, and a board member of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. Larry's technology analysis and commentary can be heard on CBS News and CBS affiliates, and read on CBSNews.com. He also writes a personal-tech column for the San Jose Mercury News. You can e-mail Larry.


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