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How to Protect Your Children From Online Sexual Predators

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How to Protect Your Children From Online Sexual Predators


Sexual predators have found an easy access point into the lives of young people: They are meeting them online through multiplayer video games and chat apps, making virtual connections right in their victims’ homes.

Many of the interactions lead to crimes of “sextortion,” in which children are coerced into sending explicit imagery of themselves.

[Read The New York Times’s investigation into the problem.]

We asked two experts how families could best navigate gaming and other online activity that can expose children to sexual predators.

Dr. Sharon W. Cooper is a forensic pediatrician at the University of North Carolina and an expert on sexual exploitation. Michael Salter is an associate criminology professor at the University of New South Wales in Australia. Both are internationally recognized for their work in the field of child sexual abuse.

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