Children are vulnerable for a variety of reasons, including the fact that they don't know who to trust and who to avoid. For this reason, they always have been and always will be targets for predators.
Internet crimes against children are on the rise. This is due in large part to the number of children using the internet. At the same time, many people have come to realize that using technology to connect with children is easier than other methods of doing so.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, there are tens of millions of children using the internet on a regular basis. Furthermore, there are many more adults doing the same.
The nature of online sex crimes, such as the distribution of child pornography, present law enforcement agencies and officials with a variety of challenges. These include but are not limited to pinpointing those who are breaking the law, collecting the appropriate evidence and apprehending offenders.
It can also be a challenge for law enforcement officials to determine if a person is truly committing an internet sex crime. In other words, there is a lot of gray area.
Due to all of these challenges, there are times when a person is charged with a sex crime he or she did not commit. For one reason or another, such as the authorities making a mistake during an investigation, the wrong person is targeted. Even though technology is taking over the world, there is still a lot to be learned. In the meantime, the chance of mistakes by law enforcement remains high.
Source: U.S. Department of Justice, "Internet Crimes Against Children," accessed Mar. 26, 2015