Tips to keep your child safe online and away from predators | Eye On Eau Claire | #childpredator | #onlinepredator | #sextrafficing

EAU CLAIRE (WQOW) – Most people in the U.S. go online every day, unfortunately, not everyone uses their platforms for good.

In recognizing Human Trafficking Awareness Month, News 18 wanted to know more about online grooming and how people can protect their children from predators online.

According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, be wary of people online who are trying to ask your child personal things like their interests, friends, or school. Another red flag is if they’re asking for communication to move from social media to a private video chat or messaging app.

A school resource officer with the Eau Claire Police Department said any minor can become a victim of online grooming.

Officer Tom Xiong said, “Anyone who can access and navigate through those social media platforms have a higher chance of being groomed, because groomers and predators are out there acting like they’re the same age as the people they’re grooming.”

Some tips for families to help prevent online grooming include advising parents to talk to their children about internet safety and set guidelines for what they should and shouldn’t be doing on their computer. Xiong also suggested keeping screens out of your child’s bedroom as most grooming occurs in privacy.

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