Mask-wearing not connected to child trafficking

Christel Deskins

The claim: Mask wearing makes children more at risk for child sex trafficking

Misinformation about the causes of sex trafficking and how to protect minors can be especially damaging in the fight against it, yet a web of conspiracy theories about the crime has grown over the past few years.

The latest false claim is that wearing masks to prevent COVID-19 makes children more susceptible to abduction, which leads to trafficking.

“Did you know that more than 2,000 missing-child reports are filed each day, and that many of them can be easily found when parents provide specific details about their physical appearance and a photo of THEIR FACE?” a post shared over 1,000 times reads. “Did you KNOW that a child in AMERICA is over 66,000 x more likely to be human trafficked than to get COVID-19?”

Similar posts contend that upwards of 800,000 children go missing every year, and

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What every parent needs to know about child identity theft

Christel Deskins

Yahoo Life is committed to finding you the best products at the best prices. The product written about here is offered in affiliation with Yahoo Life’s parent company, Verizon Media.

Kids are prime targets for identity theives because they have no credit histories and no one is checking. (Photo: Getty/iStockphoto)
Kids are prime targets for identity theives because they have no credit histories and no one is checking. (Photo: Getty/iStockphoto)

One day, a 12-year-old receives a notice from the IRS informing her that she hasn’t paid her income taxes for last year. Meanwhile in the next town over, a 2-year-old is being hounded by debt collectors for an outstanding credit card balance of $15,000. 

No, it’s not the setup for a new episode of ‘The Twilight Zone.’ These scenarios—and worse—happen in real life all the time. More than one million children were victims of identity theft in 2017, according to a report by Javelin Strategy & Research. Cleaning up this kind of mess isn’t easy, either: Child identity theft cost

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With remote back-to-school, child care challenges for providers, families emerge

Christel Deskins

Student Masks.
Student Masks.

CINCINNATI, Ohio — As school officials chalk up plans for students to learn off-site, in schools or both this fall, child care providers across the country are working to create more safe spaces and care scenarios for kids. 

And they’re doing it under pressure.

School plans are iffy, so solutions must be fluid. Care centers are already working with their own coronavirus pandemic guidelines for young children, often with crippling costs. 

“We are in the midst of a tornado, and we’re trying to figure out how to educate in the middle of it. The tornado is COVID-19. It is not letting up,” said Jorge Perez, president and CEO of YMCA of Greater Cincinnati.

“The systems are in flux. We are going to have to be speedy. We are going to need additional funding.”

That need was expressed nationwide among child care providers who took part in a survey

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Coronavirus child care pinch in U.S. poses threat to economic gains of working women

Christel Deskins

By Jonnelle Marte and Rachel Dissell

CLEVELAND (Reuters) – Most days, Zora Pannell works from her dining room table, sitting in front of her computer, turning off the video on Zoom calls to nurse her one-year-old daughter, Savannah.

Pannell has balanced working from home and caring for her daughter and son Timothy, aged 2, since March when she started a new job as a manager for a language services company the same week that Ohio issued a “stay at home” order to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Working from home is an exhausting daily juggle but she’s more worried about being told it’s time to return to the office. Her husband cannot watch the children during the day because he has a job at a local steel mill and the couple have been unable to find a daycare center they deemed safe and affordable close to their Shaker Heights

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Argentine child orchestras play on amid lockdown

Christel Deskins

By Lucila Sigal and Miguel Lo Bianco

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) – Marcela Sosa has her own private escape from the tedium of a coronavirus lockdown in the small Buenos Aires home the 12-year-old shares with six others: her violin and a computer connection that lets members of her youth orchestra play together online.

Argentina’s capital city and the surrounding area have been under lockdown since March 20, one of the longest in the world, with strict restrictions on movement and gatherings to try to limit the spread of the pathogen. But coronavirus infections have jumped in recent weeks, now exceeding 175,000 nationwide.

“I always look forward to the time I can get on (video chat app) Zoom, see my classmates, my teachers and learn new things,” said Sosa, who plays in the orchestra of La Boca, one of the 13 that make up a children and youth program around Buenos

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How Child Star-Turned-Millionaire Brock Pierce Spent the Years Between Hollywood & Presidential Bid

Christel Deskins

When Brock Pierce sat in President Bill Clinton’s Oval Office chair during a visit to the White House in 1996, the young actor — then starring in a comedy about playing the president’s son — didn’t realize what the moment would mean to him about a quarter century later.

“To this day, it just brings me incredible joy,” he says. “It’s not an everyday thing.”

Pierce, improbably, now says he wants it to be.

The former child star-turned-cryptocurrency entrepreneur announced his last-minute bid on July 4 — the same day as a much larger celebrity, Kanye West, also tossed his hat into the ring to challenge President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden in the 2020 race.

In a wide-ranging interview about what he has been up to since his mid-90s acting career, Pierce tells PEOPLE that going back to the White House has been on his mind … Read More

Cinnaminson Police Participate In Child Pornography Arrests

Christel Deskins

CINNAMINSON, NJ — The Cinnaminson Police Department is partnering with the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office to investigate technology-based crimes. As part of this partnership, law enforcement announced eight people have been arrested and charged with possessing and distributing child pornography.

They were arrested as part of a joint-investigation during the coronavirus pandemic that was dubbed “Operation Safe Quarantine.” None of those who were arrested are from Cinnaminson.

“The importance of these types of cybercrime investigations goes beyond just obtaining and presenting evidence in Superior Court; they stop our children from being further exploited, and prevent re-victimization by disrupting the continued dissemination of these sickening materials,” Cinnaminson Police Chief Richard Calabrese said. “It is imperative that all law enforcement agencies take an active role in helping to combat these types of crimes. That cannot be emphasized enough.”

Cinnaminson police have committed an officer to a long-term assignment with the prosecutor’s office’s

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Home goods retailer Wayfair is not involved in child sex trafficking

Christel Deskins

The claim: Expensive products on Wayfair are coded listings for missing children being sold in a human-trafficking scheme

The internet has been gripped with a conspiracy theory this month as thousands of viral posts allege that online furniture firm Wayfair is involved in a child sex-trafficking operation.

“So wayfair has third party vendors that are HUMAN SEX TRAFFICKING on their website,” various social media posts have alleged. “There are items like throw pillows, cabinets etc. priced at 10-20,000 dollars and named after missing girls. PLEASE BE CAREFUL!!”

Posts point to the high prices of items like pillows and dressers as evidence that the products are secretly fronts for child trafficking. Theorists further note the names of some of the dressers, which are allegedly the same children who have gone missing over the past few years.

Some users also allege similar activities occur on other e-commerce sites like Amazon, Etsy

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To fight online child sexual abuse, tech companies turn to a nonprofit startup

Christel Deskins

Thorn, a nonprofit that builds technology to combat child sexual exploitation, launched a tool on Wednesday to help small- and medium-size companies find, remove and report child sexual abuse material.

The tool, called Safer, is designed for companies that lack the resources to build their own systems.

“To eliminate the trade of this material and stop the revictimization of children in these images and videos you need to have blanket coverage of tech companies,” said Julie Cordua, CEO of Thorn, which was co-founded by the actor and investor Ashton Kutcher.

Cordua noted that while large platforms like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter have the employees and motivation to build their own tools for detecting this material, smaller companies don’t.

“It’s expensive, it’s a heavy lift operationally and it requires specialist knowledge,” she said. “We saw this gap and thought we could build a shared system to get the rest of the

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Elon Musk’s net worth just hit $70.5 billion, surpassing Warren Buffett’s. Here’s how the billionaire Tesla and SpaceX CEO went from getting bullied as a child to becoming one of the most successful and controversial men in tech.

Christel Deskins

Elon Musk.
Elon Musk.

Steve Nesius/Reuters

  • Elon Musk has had a tumultuous yet successful life. 

  • He was bullied as a child but ultimately attended an Ivy League university, going on to become the CEO of two companies, Tesla and SpaceX, and the founder of three more.

  • He’s also been married three times and has triplets and twins. He just had another baby with his girlfriend, the musician Grimes. 

  • But Musk also courts controversy, especially on Twitter. The tech billionaire has been outspoken about the coronavirus crisis, questioning the severity of the outbreak and urging for business to resume.

  • Now, Musk has hit a new milestone: as Tesla’s stock hit an all-time high, Musk’s wealth surged to $70.5 billion.

  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

It seems like there’s nothing Elon Musk can’t do. 

As CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, founder of The Boring Company, and cofounder of OpenAI and Neuralink, Musk

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