Parents are being reminded to monitor their children’s internet activity.
In March, ALERT’s Internet Child Exploitation Unit received information on 243 potential situations – coinciding with the start of measures against COVID-19.
This is a massive increase from the roughly 110 they averaged in the previous two-years.
“With children being home from school, not only are they spending more time online, but it appears that so are the predators. And they are looking to take advantage of our most vulnerable population: our kids,” said Supt. Dwayne Lakusta, ALERT CEO, in a release.
ICE is expecting to see numbers increase by the end of month, so they’re reaching out to parents to help stop this situations before they arise.
“As a parent myself, I have recently noticed some concerning online behavior and have had to be even more diligent in monitoring what apps my child is using and who they are engaging with,” added Lakusta.
During the first three months of 2020, ICE arrested 21 while handing out 61 charges. Through these arrests, four children were rescued from sexual exploitation, abuse and/or instances of luring.