Online grooming of under-10s increasing - police

Lockdown may have been a factor in big rise last year

(ANSA) - ROME, FEB 9 - The Italian postal police said Tuesday that the online grooming of young children by paedophiles is on the rise.
    It said it handled 14 cases of grooming regarding children aged nine or younger in 2018, 26 in 2019 and 41 in 2020 in figures released on Safer Internet Day.
    It said children spending more time online due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the related restrictions may have been a factor in the sharp rise last year.
    It said the real number of cases is probably even higher.


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