Tablet, phone apps make targeting children easier for predators

Tablet, phone apps make targeting children easier for predators

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(WJBK) - Within hours after FOX 2 shared a family's story about a relentless stranger sending lewd messages and videos to their 10-year-old daughter via an app, several more families have contacted FOX 2 saying the same thing happened to them.

One, in particular, is the Wade family.

Rebecca Wade of Wolverine Lake says a stranger has also been communicating with her young daughter online via the app ooVoo. Her daughter uses the free online video service to chat with her parents and friends on her tablet.

The daughter also plays games on the app, which have chat rooms. Wade says her daughter arbitrarily accepted a random friend request in the chat room, and then photos of a naked man were sent to her within minutes.

The daughter told the man, who goes by the name Gunther Gostaf, to stop contacting her because she is 10 years old. The man did not listen, and continued to ask the girl to take her clothes off and send pictures.

Wade filed a report with the Oakland County Sheriff and the Michigan State Police Internet Task Force.

The Williams family told a very similar situation to FOX 2's Taryn Asher, except their daughter was using the app Tango.

Police urge parents not let their pre-teen children downloading video-sharing apps on their devices, and provide these tips if you fear a stranger has made illicit contact with your child.
  • Do not erase the material on the device or the computer
  • An internet task force is available to review the online contact, no matter where you live
  • If the material is deleted, investigators should still be able to access the data and find the photos and/or video
  • Keep communication open with your children about the dangers of online predators, and remind them they will not be punished if they are victimized





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