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This Is An Emergency
What do to when you find yourself in a dangerous situation online.

If you find that you have become at risk online do not panic.
There are steps you can take to protect yourself and possibly catch the perpetrator.

Follow these steps if adverse situations occur online:

  1. First, talk to your parents. The need to know what has happened so that they may help you. If they know how the person got the personal information tell your parents.
  2. Save all information that you have. This includes email's, guestbook entries, bulletin board messages, images, files, etc. This information is used by the law enforcement authorities to track down and locate the perpetrator. Usually these files contain IP (internet protocol) addresses. The addresses identifies the origin of the user. So you can see how important this information is.
  3. Contact your local law enforcement authorities and report the problem. Do not turn over the material to anyone other than law enforcement authorities. DO NOT email, sign a potential predators guestbook or bulletin board and let them know you are reporting them or that you think they are a predator! Law enforcement authorities will not appreciate this behaviour. They realize you think you are helping but in reality you are making their job impossible. Once the perpetrator becomes tipped off there is nothing stopping them from "disappearing" and "reappearing" using a new IP, webpage address, email etc. If they don't know they are being investigated, they will not go anywhere and be easier to catch.
  4. Do what the law enforcement authorities tell you to do. They know the best way to keep you safe. They have seen your house, know your neighborhood and city, and have access to agencies to help in the situation.
  5. Keep the lines of communication open. Ask your parents to monitor your sleeping, eating and social behaviour. If there is any change, talk to your parents about it and seek professional counselling if necessary.
  6. Last, go through all the safety resources listed on the right hand side of this page. Be more careful, aware and cautious with what you are doing online from now on.

For more safety information and what to do in an emergency, please refer to the following sites:

Federal Bureau of Investigation(FBI)
The National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC)
Royal Canadian Mounted Police(RCMP)

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