A 2006 US study found that 1 in 7 (13%) children had received a sexual solicitation or been approached online within the previous 12 months; 1 in 3 (34%) had unwanted exposure to pictures of naked people or people having sex; 1 in 11 (9%) were threatened or harassed; and 1 in 25 (4%) received an ‘aggressive’ sexual solicitation.
Five simple steps children can take to reduce risks are to:
• Remove flirty photos
• Remove flirty nicknames
• Remove surnames
• Remove mobile numbers
• Set their site to private (although this still allows people to access and then share private photos and information).
SOURCE: MS Sally-Anne McCormack, Healthed Sydney Paediatrics Update & Education Day 2008. Editor Ramesh Manocha.