MySpace rocked by 29,000 sex offenders

24th Jul 2007 | 23:00

MySpace rocked by 29,000 sex offenders

5% of US sex offenders found on the site, removed

Social networking behemoth MySpace says that it has found and deleted the profiles of 29,000 sex offenders. The figure is US-only, meaning that around 5 per cent of America's sex offenders have now been purged from the site.

"The exploding epidemic of sex offender profiles on MySpace - 29,000 and counting - screams for action," Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal told local media.

There is growing concern for the safety of young children who register on social networking platforms such as MySpace. The current rule is that you have to be over 14 to register, although this is not enforced and can easily be bypassed by anyone with half a brain.

The worry is that sex offenders such as paedophiles and rapists might use MySpace to make friends with children in order to groom them. So officials in the US are trying to introduce a law to force MySpace to demand parental permission before children are allowed to register on the site.

MySpace purges sex offenders

In a statement, MySpace said: "We're pleased that we've successfully identified and removed registered sex offenders from our site and hope that other social networking sites follow our lead."

Back in May, when MySpace removed the first 7,000 sex offender profiles, FBI consultant R. Stephanie Good said: "Releasing the names of registered sex offenders is only a first step for MySpace in ensuring the safety of children on their site.

"As someone who spends a lot of time communicating with sexual predators on the internet for the FBI, I have to stress that so much more needs to be done to adequately protect children on sites such as these.

"Without more safeguards, children will remain extremely vulnerable, especially to those predators who have yet to be caught.

"As for those registered sex offenders who have been identified on MySpace, I encourage attorneys general to actively pursue criminal charges," she said.

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