Statistics & True Stories

To fix the problem, we first had to understand the problem.
Here are some of the things we found in our research.
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40% of American teens have an app that would allow predators to reach them without anyone knowing.

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There were 4.4 million online child sex crimes reported in 2015, more than were reported in all years from 1998 to 2014, combined.

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40% of American teens use an app that gives them the option to secretly join any of a number of community forums, located near them, where they can get advice like how to molest a 7 year-old child.

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Selfie photos and videos are the fastest growing type of child pornography. This often starts when children are tricked into making and sharing this content with strangers.

True Stories

These are a few of thousands of cases we studied when developing SaferKid.
(We have minimized details, but these may be uncomfortable to read)

Last summer, a fourteen-year-old boy went on an app and met a man in his twenties. While the boy's single mother was at work, the man came over and sexually assaulted the boy. Afterwards, the man told the boy he was HIV positive.

A thirty-one-year-old man was arrested in Florida after he befriended a total of 350 different young girls online while pretending to be a fifteen-year-old boy. In each case, he got them to expose their breasts on camera and secretly recorded them. After this, he got them to make more sexually explicit photos and videos for him by threatening to expose the recordings on social media if they did not do it. It's hard to imagine how terrified these girls must have been.

A few years ago, an app received reports of several different children being raped by predators who met them on the app. The app maker responded by making changes, including not allowing anyone to talk to a minor within fifty miles of the minor. By late 2015, the fifty-mile radius restriction had been removed, and people were using the app to assault children again. The app was recently acquired for tens of millions of dollars.

At a high school in Colorado, a large number of students were playing a game where they were earning "points" based on how many naked photos of their classmates they could collect. To keep the game secret, they were all using sexting products that are designed to look like calculators. If you look at the app on the phone, and even if you open it, it looks like a calculator until you enter your special numeric password. The largest maker of these calculator sexting products has millions of users, and there are over 50 competitors making similar products.