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Child Sex Crime Linked to Facebook

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9:25am 26th June 2014

Revealed: the link between Facebook and child sex crime across Cornwall and Devon.

Police figures seen by Pirate FM show 65 offences have been connected to the social networking site in the last two years.

Is covers everything from grooming to indecent messages and photos.

Some involved children as young as ten.

Duchy web expert Andy Davenport: "You come down to effectively policing and monitoring the social media networks which, to a degree, the responsibility lies in the people who run them. However, as with all these sorts of situations they will be driven underground, other networks that are less easily accessible.

"It's a very anonymous place and unless you've got a clear indication of who the people are, it's very difficult to track them down and find them. The social media networks have taken steps to make that information more available but it can still be difficult pulling that information together and finding out who was behind it."

Claude Knights heads up child safety charity Kidscape and says: "These are still not such common things, I mean they do happen, but even one is too many. But I feel that it's about awareness, just knowing this happens everywhere and it can happen in any situation."

Five things you can do to help you stay safe on Facebook and social networking sites:

1) Check your security settings - change it so 'friend's only' can access your page.

2) Don't add people you don't know in real life.

3) Don't post information about going away - it makes it easier for thieves to target you.

4) Don't add too much personal information.

5) Think about the photos you are adding - i.e. children wearing school uniform.

9:25am 26th June 2014

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