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Look Both Ways by Linda Criddle

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The Lure of Anonymity

The irony is that because most people feel that nobody knows who they are online, they often become more forthcoming about themselves in a very public way. They feel liberated, telling total strangers things that they might not tell those they know well. They end up giving away a tremendous amount of information that criminals can use to take advantage of them. Children who find it hard to talk to parents or friends about sensitive subjects might be most at risk by placing their trust in online strangers.

Consider a teenager who joins a chat or creates a blog. He might find the sympathy he gets from an online "friend" refreshing after what seems like a lack of understanding from his parents or peers. Predators are masters ...

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