Websites promoting anorexia, bulimia jump nearly 500%

Security vendor Optenet has supplied us with some chilling metrics measuring the dark underbelly of the Internet. Over the 12 months of 2007, the number of web sites promoting anorexia and bulimia increased by 470%; sites featuring child pornography grew 18%; and sites with violent content increased 125% . Meanwhile, web sites promoting racism grew 70%, while web sites encouraging illicit drug use increased by 62%.
This underscores something I frequently tell my grown sons, as they get ready to start families of their own: the digital world we live in is a much more treacherous place to raise kids than the simple analog world they grew up in. Joel Silberman, Optenet's VP of North American operations, agrees with me. “Due to the rapidly incre asing amount of dangerous and illicit content on the Internet, people need to take serious measures to protect their families and businesses,” Silberman says. “As the web continues to evolve from commercial to social, it is more vital than ever for parents and man agers alike to categorize, monitor and control online activity.”By Byron AcohidoPhoto: Brazilian model Ana Carolina Reston. She died on Nov. 14, 2006, in Sao Paulo from a generalized infection caused by anorexia. (AP/L'Equipe Agence)

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