MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. - Sheriff Ana Franklin says protecting children is a priority; from homes with drug use, homes with violence and a rapidly growing threat.
"One of things that have been foremost in law enforcement dealings with crimes against children is internet crimes, the predators that use the internet to pull children," said the sheriff.
So the Morgan County Sheriff's Office saw a big change this summer, becoming part of the Alabama Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.
Predators using social media to prey on children cross city, county and state lines. The multi-agency task force gives investigators access to resources, from money to technology and manpower.
"The ability for them to forensically evaluate and find the exact IP address that these things are coming through is an invaluable tool in trying to make sure we find these people, prosecute these people, and we keep them out of the presence of our children."
As usual, officials remind parents to monitor your children's social media.
"[Predators] can fake a profile picture, they do all of that and create another persona and they can reel these children in, make them vulnerable, make them trust them," said Sheriff Franklin.
You're also urged to be aware of how much information a possible predator can pull from your child's profiles.