The recent film “Sound of Freedom” rightly brought attention to the horrific global child sex trafficking industry. But the problem is much nearer to home than most people realize. Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok provide traffickers and eager predators unprecedented access to children in the United States. And this sexual exploitation can happen without children ever leaving their parents’ homes.
Online platforms have made it far easier for strangers to gain access to children. According to the Houston-based organization United Against Human Trafficking, 55 percent of victims of U.S. sex trafficking aged 7 to 11 are recruited through social media apps and websites. Social media makes it easy for perpetrators to find and communicate with their victims and also provides a convenient venue for sexual content to be advertised, bought, and sold.