Why Social Media Predators are Dangerous

As technology continues to advance and become smarter, so are many sexual predators. Children love their phones and apps, and social media predators know it. In fact, the only defense parents really have when it comes to protecting their children from online predators is to have a relationship of communication and understanding with their kids. Other than implementing a full lockdown technique for their youngsters that does not allow for any possible access to technology, communication is the only way to protect children from dangerous online sexual predators.

Social Media Predators Stalk Children

If a child has any sort of online presence in the social media world, there is a good chance that out there somewhere, a sexual predator knows about it. Sexual predators come in different forms. One of the most dangerous types is the kind that wins children over with flattery and attention. With the utmost patience and clever, manipulative tactics, child molesters weasel their way into the hearts of vulnerable youngsters until they gain their trust. Once they have the trust of the kid, they wait for the perfect moment and pounce like a hungry wolf. In many cases, parents never have a clue about what’s going on behind the scenes until it is too late.

Social Media and Child Sex Trafficking

One common way that child sex traffickers target their victims is through social media. It is easy to learn details about a specific individual if you take the time to pay attention to the way they act on social platforms. Child sex traffickers pull children into their trafficking rings by finding the ones that are ripe for the picking and treating them to gifts, attention, and money. Rebellious teenagers that are angry at their parents are prime targets. In most cases, it is not difficult to give them drugs and lead them astray. Many young men and women want to prove to their parents that they don’t need them and that they can do things on their own. Sex traffickers take advantage of this and stalk their prey through various social media platforms. Some of the platforms that sexual predators use to stalk children are:

  • Snapchat
  • Facebook
  • TikTok
  • Whisper
  • Kik Messenger
  • Tinder
  • Instagram
  • Omegle
  • Blendr

When parents try to track their children down on social media, they run into problems because it is so easy for a person to create an account with a false name. It can be difficult to locate a person on social media if they don’t want you to find them.

The Social Media Sexual Predator

One of the reasons why social media predators are so dangerous is because they can masquerade as anybody they want to. It is not difficult for a 35-year-old male to use a profile picture of a child and pretend to be a kid. Social media predators say the things a young person wants to hear. Once they gain their trust, they can have them meet somewhere. While the victim is waiting for the person in the profile picture to show up, the real profile person shows up and takes advantage of the situation in whatever way suits them at the time. Situations like this can become gruesome crimes.

Warnings and Cautions

Every parent and guardian should know what to watch for in order to determine if their child is at risk of a social media predator communicating with them. One of the main things to watch out for is secrecy. Although children love their privacy and are entitled to it, there is a point where being private and being secretive differ. If you find that your children are hiding things from you, it is a good indication that they may be communicating with somebody that is unsafe, or that they are doing things they don’t want you to know about. Keep in mind that if you accuse them of associating with unwanted people, they will try to hide it even further. Do your best to approach the situation civilly, and let them know that you are there for them if they have problems. Encourage them to talk to people that they can trust and not to people that they can’t.

If you happen upon any of your teen’s social media accounts and see inappropriate comments from people, don’t ignore them. Keep a watchful eye and remain diligent. Sometimes sexual predators will say things that suggest sexual tones in order to see how the victim responds and gauge the chances of forging a successful illicit relationship.

Communication and Understanding

When children get to a certain age, they begin to realize that their parents aren’t as special as they thought they were when they were younger. Adolescents begin to question the validity of their parents’ rules and values. It takes a special kind of relationship for parents and teens to see beyond these natural occurrences and continue to communicate. Teens that feel a connection to their families and parents are less likely to be fooled by the fake affection that they will get from an online predator.

Sadly enough, there are plenty of young people out there that are in desperate need of attention and affection, so they will take it anywhere they can get it. It is important that parents have civilized conversations with their children about the dangers of online predators.

Although raising teenagers can be extremely challenging, there is hope if the bond between the teens and the parents is strong enough to endure the turbulence. Both the children and the parents have to know the difference between communication and arguing. Communication is key; arguing is a waste of time.


Not all people that have social media accounts are sexual predators. Not all children that are on social media are being stalked. However, it is better to assume the worst and avoid a catastrophe than to assume that everybody’s intentions on the internet are in the best interest of all children. Continuing to be cautious and diligent about the safety of children is the right thing to do. Be aware of your surroundings, and make sure to regularly check your local sex offender registry to see if any predators move into your neighborhood. Sexual predators do exist, but that doesn’t mean we have to let them harm our kids.

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