Beware of Sexual Predators on Social Media
As social media has already lost its significance, social media accounts can be hijacked by criminals and others for nefarious purposes.
By Rakesh Raman
Today, social media sites like Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter are frequented by idle junkies who waste their time on such sites. They keep hanging out on these sites without any purpose or play useless social media games.
You’d hardly see a serious social media user who uses such sites for a meaningful discussion or for professional social media marketing.
As social media has already lost its significance, social media accounts can be hijacked by criminals and others for nefarious purposes. And it’s often a young victim at the other end of the computer, suggests the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
Which is why parents need to be aware of what could happen if their child unknowingly comes across someone on social media who poses a threat—and should talk to their kids about it.
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According to FBI, a 23-year-old California man was recently sentenced to 29 years in federal prison for attempting to produce child pornography and enticing a minor.
Jordan James Kirby used Facebook to solicit juvenile girls (as well as women) for sexually explicit photos, which he would then use to extort the victims for additional pictures and/or for sex acts with him.
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He contacted hundreds of victims, many of whom were minor females. He would sometimes claim to be an agent for a modeling company and, after complimenting them on their looks, would offer the girls thousands of dollars for photos of themselves in various stages of undress.
To tempt them, he posted pictures of himself holding large amounts of cash and photos of money spread out on top of his computer. Unfortunately, some of the girls he contacted were either duped by Kirby or enticed by the money and ultimately sent him the photos he requested.
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Of course, once Kirby got the photos, he never sent the money. Instead, he would up the ante—threatening to send the photos to the girls’ parents or release them on the Internet unless they sent him yet more pictures, or, in some cases, met up with him for sex acts.
Kirby’s illicit activities became known when the parents of one of his victims—after discovering information on a home computer—contacted the FBI’s Chico Resident Agency out of Sacramento Field Office.
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The case agent then contacted a detective with the Paradise Police Department for assistance with identifying local suspects. After the execution of several search warrants on Internet service providers, investigators identified and arrested Kirby in May 2014 on state criminal charges. In the meantime, the federal case was being built against him.
This joint investigation made good use of an FBI child forensic interviewer, the FBI’s Computer Analysis Response Team, and the Paradise Police Department’s familiarity with the town’s young people.
Earlier this year, Kirby pled guilty in federal court to six criminal counts involving victims between the ages of 10 and 15. And this past May, he was sentenced to 29 years in prison.
By Rakesh Raman, the managing editor of RMN Company
You also can read: More Articles by the RMN Editor, Rakesh Raman
Photo courtesy: FBI
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