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Q: What are the dangers to chat rooms and instant messengers?

Dear Help Desk,

I am doing a persuasive speech about why you shouldn't chat online and the dangers of it. Do you have any additional information that I can use and sources.

Sincerely, Carissa


Response from Membrane.com.

A:

Dear Carissa,

1) All chat rooms are monitored by the FBI. All conversations are stored. Some youths have found out that what they consider a joke... the FBI considers a threat. Just by saying something "funny" about a teacher (or other student), you could be thrown out of school and arrested. This is what happens with the "good guys" that are listening. Imagine all the "bad guys" that are listening.

2) You can not be sure who you are really chatting with... that is to say there is not "authentication" (many children have been tricked into meeting with child molesters. Look into the ex-executive from Infoseek for more info.)

3) Much of the software that lets you chat (like IM) also opens holes to your computer that will allow bad guys in, too. Once they have control of your computer, how would you know what they are doing?

We hope this helps.

Sincerely,
Help Desk

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