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The Internet, A Haven for Pedophiles
Tuesday, 26 November, 2013 | 19:00 WIB
The Internet, A Haven for Pedophiles

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The internet has become a haven for pedophiles across the globe. Children in Indonesia, especially, lack protection against these predators as internet laws and restrictions are still limited. 

The Netherlands branch of Terre des Hommes, a child protection charity federation, created "Sweetie", a virtual ten-year-old girl from the Philippines, to lure pedophiles. For around two and a half months, Sweetie was greeted by some 20,000 pedophiles from 71 countries around the world, said Terre des Hommes regional program advisor Hanneke Oudkerk.  

Suspected pedophiles were tricked into believing they were engaged in an online chat with a 10-year-old girl from the Philippines called Sweetie, when in fact they were conversing with a team of four researches on the outskirts of Amsterdam, reports ABC News. 

The group said it was able to obtain the names, IP computer addresses and online contact details of more than 1,000 suspected perpetrators in just over 10 weeks. It passed the information on to Interpol. 

Terre des Hommes described these pedophiles as predators as not all of them were actually pedophiles. Some were merely hunting down children for fun. Terre des Hommes said that three of the 1,000 predators they managed to trace were from Indonesia. 

Tempo then launched its own small investigation into this matter last Monday. After seven hours of surfing the net undercover, Tempo’s "Lisa", a fourteen year old virtual girl, managed to attract up to 75 predators offering various sexual favors such as hot chats, pornographic video conferences, and even offering to meet despite knowing the "girl" was only fourteen years old. 

The predators Tempo uncovered came from various backgrounds, from students, businessmen, student guidancecounselors, managers, employees and expatriates. 

Although their existence has been uncovered, these predators have not been highlighted by child protection institutes here. The Indonesian Commission on Child Protection (KPAI), for example, has never conducted research on sexual attacks initiated by online chatting applications. The institution has never received any public reports on this matter either. 

The KPAI has never reviewed cases on child predators. So far, the commission has only uncovered how 97 percent of teenagers located in major cities throughout the nation have watched porn. 

"We are about to conduct a research on pedophilia through the internet," said KPAI secretary general Muhammad Ihsan. 

Sub-directorate chief detective of cyber crimes at the National Police Headquarters, Sr. Comr. Rahmad Wibowo, said the police are working to eradicate internet crimes yet they have yet to apprehend any child predators. "We prioritize preventive measures," he said. 

The police, added Rahmad, have already collaborated with the United States to trade information on cyber crimes through social media. He said the IP address of these predators could be tracked down based on their use of social media. 

ABC NEWS | SUBKHAN | TIKA PRIMANDARI | TRI ARTINING PUTRI



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