B.C. researcher examines how children are targeted online

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Dr. Jan Kitzman, a professor and researcher at Victoria BC, is a father above all else.

But because of her expertise in technology, socialization and online behaviour, she is often approached by parents and carers with questions about keeping their children safe online.

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Kitzman said that many people are too concerned about how to do it, they also have an “optimism bias.”

“It’s not going to happen to us. It happens to other people,” he said. “It’s thinking that bad things happen to others and only good things happen to us. And yes, it is unfair and unfair.


“You know, these things happen to all families.”

When asked whether children should be allowed to have social media accounts or whether they should have a phone with internet access, she knew she wanted to address the dangers children face online – not just those of families. But also for himself.

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Kietzmann is now recognized, along with her co-author Dionysios Demetis, for her research on online child sexual abuse and the role that technologies and social actors play in shaping online abuse.

his paper, Online Child Sexual Abuse: A New MIS Challenge, It was recognized as a paper of the year at the International Conference on Information Systems in Copenhagen, winning the honor above all others on the same topic.

Peter B at the University of Victoria “It was a really interesting project that revealed a lot of interesting insights,” said Kitzman, professor of information systems at the Gustavson School of Business.

“And so they gave us a paper of the year award for the whole association, which we were very pleased to see.”

Keitzman said they began by approaching the topic of keeping children safe online and how online predators reach children from the “dark side”.

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“There are a lot of moving parts in how kids grow up,” he said. “Technology is constantly changing. Parents are permanently overwhelmed by having kids in the first place, let there be technology on top of that, and then kids have these demands for a variety of things that they need to have access to.” Needed

He started by talking to former directors of the intelligence services, people who work in cybercrime units, school districts and police officers in the US, UK and Canada.

“So we came up with a way in which we can think about the different stages that criminals often go through and we can think about the use of technology on the one hand,” Kitzman said.

“But what we really discovered is the use of imagery.”

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Keitzmann described it as a triad.

Children are on one point, criminals are on another and law enforcement is on a third. Keitzman said that all three points of the triangle are trying to use different techniques for different reasons.

He said that imagery posted online is at the root of many problems.

“We often talk to kids and say, you know, ‘Don’t post things on platforms, don’t record your video, don’t show photos to strangers. Be careful what you do online’,” Keitzman said. .

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“Kids aren’t necessarily capable of making decisions. Their prefrontal cortex isn’t fully developed. They understand instant gratification. Now, I want to do it because everyone else is doing it, and it’s fun, But they do not understand the delayed consequences of their actions. So they are not physically there yet.”

The RCMP, along with agencies working to keep children safe online across Canada, reports a troubling trend of increased child abuse cases across the country.

Compared to 2021 to 2022, cybertip.ca The overall online victimization of children registered a 36 percent increase.

Earlier this month, the Central Okanagan RCMP reported seeing a troubling trend – an increase in people accessing and possessing child sexual abuse material.

Last month, Granthshala News learned that Surrey RCMP are investigating whether sextortion may have played a role in the tragic suicide of 14-year-old Robin Janjua, described as a bright young hockey star from Surrey.

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In October, a B.C. judge sentenced a Dutch man to 13 years in prison for harassing and extorting B.C. teen Amanda Todd.

The case attracted international attention and during the trial it was revealed that Aydin Coban had used nearly two dozen online accounts on four platforms in what prosecutors called a “relentless campaign of sextortion” against Todd since she was 12. Was 15 years old.

He obtained a topless video clip of the girl, then used it as leverage to try to force her to do a webcam sex “show”. When she protested, he three times followed through on his threats to send the material to her family, friends and the school community, the court heard.

Coban sent nearly 700 messages, with some accounts seeking to befriend and obtain information about the teen or to trick her into further exposing herself, while others were threatening and abusive, seeking to “f-up” her life. was promised and followed as she changed schools amid threats from the real world, the court heard.

Todd took his own life in 2012.

A few weeks before her death, she made a YouTube video where she silently held up cue cards, documenting the pain she suffered and its effect on her life. The video went viral and has become a symbol in the fight against online harassment.

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Keitzman said the targeting of children online can happen to any family at any time, regardless of social status, location, wealth, or…

B.C. researcher examines how children are targeted online

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