Pokemon link to porn sites


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 27 Jul 2005

KUALA LUMPUR: Cartoon characters like Pokemon and My Little Pony, which are children's favourites, have been used as fronts for links to pornographic sites on the Internet. 

Science, Technology and Innovations Minister Datuk Seri Dr Jamaluddin Jarjis cited a case in 2000 when a search on these characters turned up 26 websites containing hundreds of links to indecent material, of which 30% were hardcore pornography. 

He said statistics given by the Malaysian Coalition for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse showed that 74% of websites with “indecent content” masquerade as harmless sites and can be readily called up by search engines. 

“The home was once a safe and secure haven for our children. However, with Internet penetration on the increase, we also risk exposing our children to an array of cyber threats – some of which can be addictive and others even life-threatening – right within the home,” he said. 

Dr Jamaluddin’s speech was delivered by ministry deputy secretary-general (policy) Alihan Abdul Hamid at the launch of the Positive Use of the Internet Programme and Computer Associates’ Kidsafe Internet campaign yesterday. 

Dr Jamaluddin said parents and youth could access www.ipositif.gov.my for comprehensive information on how to safeguard their online environment. 

He said parents needed to play a more active role in guiding and monitoring their children’s activities on the Internet. 

“The public cannot just bank on government policies and initiatives. Parents and caregivers play an equally vital role in safeguarding children on the Internet,” he said. 

In a press conference later, Computer Associates International managing director (Asia South) Piti Pramotedham said parents nowadays could no longer shy away from the Internet although they might feel intimidated that their children seemed more capable in using the technology. 

“Therefore, through our efforts and partnership with the media, we hope we can provide the resources and the visibility for parents so that they know where to go for help. 

“The work of keeping children safe has to be done at home by parents,” he said, adding that a study in the United States last year showed that some 75% of sex crimes involving 13- to 15-year-olds originated from Internet chat rooms.  

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