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MSP Computer Crimes Unit Offers Advice to Parents

Computer Crimes Kids
Computer Crimes Kids Social Media Apps

The disturbing also led to interviews with several other teenage girls, and MSP says several cell phones were collected for possible evidence.

It serves as a warning to parents everywhere, to pay attention to what your kids are doing with those phones and on social media. You don’t have to be a “helicopter parent” and look at every single text message or chat, but that doesn’t mean parents shouldn’t pay attention. Have a discussion with your kids and see what kind of conversations they’re having, and make sure they’re with people they know and trust.

Craig Baumgartner with the MSP Computer Crimes Unit says, “whether it be a text message or video or photograph, the best thing to do would be to start the conversation right there and then with your child, as to ‘what was the context of this? Are you sending or receiving this? Is this a person you do know or don’t know?’”

And if there’s something inappropriate – report it as soon as possible. “A lot of times the initial response is to go through and delete everything and try to wipe it clean. That does a lot of time relieve parents’ fears that this is out there. But that makes it a lot harder for us to go through and have to rebuild those cases,” Baumgartner says.

Another tip, know the functions and features of how the apps work. Some apps like snapchat can show the location where people live or where they are at any given time. And Baumgartner says, be a good role model for what’s appropriate to send and not to send, and have those discussions with your kids.

For more resources on Internet Crimes Against Children,

For a closer look at some of the more popular apps with teens, .