Monthly Archives: October 2006

Frightening (Identity) Facts for Halloween

As we’ve all heard by now, identity theft is the fastest growing crime in the United States. And dedicated readers of this blog already understand my passion lies with protecting children online.Today’s post is dedicated to sharing some more frightening information on the subject of identities related to both these subjects for you to consider.

  • Contrary to the belief that senior citizens are at most risk for identity theft, it’s really Generation X (ages 25-34) that has the highest rate of identity fraud (5.4% with an average fraud amount of $6,270).In fact, the 65+ demographic group has the smallest rate of identity fraud (2.3%) and a lower average fraud rate of $2,665. (BBB Online)
  • The business community loses between $40,000 – $92,000 per name in fraudulent charges. (Internet Theft Resource Center)
  • One third of youth ages 8-18 have talked about meeting someone they have only met through the Internet and 1 in 8 of people in this same age group discovered that someone they were communicating with online was an adult pretending to be much younger. (Polly Klaas Foundation, Feb 2006)
  • 66% of commercial pornography sites did not include a warning of adult content and only 3% required adult verification (Child-Proofing on the World Wide Web: A Survey of Adult Webservers, 2001, Jurimetrics. National Research Council Report, 2002)
  • In a survey conducted by the Intelligence Group, Dateline questioned 500 teenagers across the country, ages 14-18 about computer habits, when asked if someone they’ve met online has wanted to meet them in person, 58% said yes and 29% said they’ve had a scary experience online (MSNBC Interactive, April 26 2006)
  • 31% of 7th -12th graders pretended to be older to get onto a website (The Henry J Kaiser Family Foundation Study, March 2005)




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Filed under Age Verification, fraud, Halloween, identity, identity theft, Identity verification, Internet Safety, social networking, Uncategorized

Danger Will Robinson! Danger!

I recently heard an alarming statistic. 44% of teenagers have different friends online than offline. This is according to research presented by the CMO of Virgin Mobile who was the featured speaker at Atlanta’s AMA luncheon this month.

Does this raise red flags for you too?

In the absence of not having a friendly robot to supervise our kids and point out the dangers online, this seems like a good time to tell you about different websites I’ve found that might help: whose editor recently wrote a parent guidebook for MySpace and social networking. segments its site for teens, parents, teachers, and 50+ consumers. provides a list of stop, think, click tips (the number one being protect your personal information). And finally there is which is endorsed by the US Congress.

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Filed under Age Verification, Atlanta, Internet Safety, MySpace, social networking