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29,000 sex offenders on MySpace website July 24, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Internet, Internet Safety.
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MySpace.com has found more than 29,000 registered sex offenders with profiles on the popular social networking website, more than four times the number cited by the company two months ago, North Carolina officials said Tuesday.

North Carolina’s Roy Cooper is one of several attorneys general who recently demanded the News Corp.-owned website provide data on how many registered sex offenders were using the site, along with information about where they live.

After initially withholding the information, citing federal privacy laws, MySpace began sharing the information in May after the states filed formal legal requests.

At the time, MySpace said it had already used a database it helped create to remove about 7,000 profiles of sex offenders, out of a total of about 180,000,000 profiles on the site. Two MySpace spokeswomen did not immediately return calls seeking comment Tuesday.

Cooper is pushing for legislation that would require children to receive parental permission before creating social networking profiles, and require the websites to enact procedures for verifying the parents’ identity and age.

There are about 600,000 registered sex offenders in the United States. MySpace is a personal website tool allowing people to post blogs, music, and videos. More than 80 million people have registered a MySpace page. News Corp bought the site for $580m last year.

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