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Children are reported missing at the rate of 750,000 per year, 62,500 per month, 14,423, per week, 2,054 per day, and 85 per hour or 3 children every 2 minutes.

They are at a higher risk to be victims due to the internet than most parents realize. Chat and Instant Messaging are the new playgrounds for predators and paedophiles. Anonymity fostered by the internet, coupled with the huge pool of targets, make these communication tools an ideal channel for predators and paedophiles to target children.

The statistics below are designed to help parents understand the scope of the dangers their children face.

Internet usage

of teens and young adults use the internet.
of teenagers and children talk in chat rooms on a daily basis. This figure is as high as 84% in some countries.
of online teens use instant messaging.

Children targeted

of all children online will be targeted by an online predator or paedophile each year. That's one child out of every five.
of teenage girls say they had been sexually harassed in a chat room - and only 7% tell their parents about the harassment.
of the targets for online predators are aged 14 or older, while an amazing 22% are incredibly aged 10 to 13.

How they are targeted

of sexual solicitations were made in chat rooms or through instant messages.
of online solicitations occur in the child's own home - the remaining 30% occur at someone else's home.

Children and their secrets

of children say they could chat online without their parents' knowledge, and 65% of all parents agree.
of children have engaged in sex conversations with people they've met in net chat rooms, and 54% claim they could have a cyber-relationship.
of parents say that their children aren’t careful enough when giving out information about themselves online.
of children are willing to share personal information online about themselves and their family in exchange for goods and services.

Language barriers

of parents don't understand common chat lingo used by their children such as A/S/L (Age/Sex/Location).
of parents couldn't identify common chat room lingo that teenagers use to warn people they're chatting with that their parents are watching. Those phrases include POS (Parent Over Shoulder) and P911 (Parent Alert).

Stranger danger

of predators are strangers, and according to the FBI, at least one adult crosses state lines every day to meet with a child they have developed a relationship with online.
of teens have received an instant message or an email from a stranger, and 50% have engaged in conversations with strangers.

Getting help and protection

percent of children targeted do not tell their parents about the harassment, as they were worried that their parents would ban them from going online.
of parents either do not have or do not know if they have software on their computers that monitors where their children go online and with whom they interact.
of households with Internet access are not proactively protecting their children with filtering or blocking software
of children feel they should be better protected from harmful material and individuals on the net.

Sources: Highlights of the Youth Internet Safety Survey - US Department of Justice, FBI, Ibid, JAMA, Pew Research Center, Crimes Against Children Research Center, FamilyPC Survey, Center for Missing and Exploited Children, NCMEC Online Victimization, The Kaiser Family Foundation in consultation with International Communications Research, Cox Communications, eMarketer, Girl Scout Research Institute and The Evening Times (Scotland).




Who r your kids REALLY talking to




93% of children targeted do not tell their parents about online sexual solicitation or harassment, as they were worried that their parents would ban them from going online.


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