Social networking site, MySpace, has removed thousands of profiles of convicted sex offenders to protect its young users from abuse.
The move comes a day after lawyers in the US demanded that the News Corporation owned company hand over the names and addresses of the offenders and remove their profiles from its database.
North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper led the action and believes data from Sentinel Tech Cooper, a company working with the networking site, shows thousands of paedophiles may have been confirmed as members.
“MySpace is a treasure trove of potential victims for child predators,” said Cooper. “Sex offenders have no business being on this site, and we believe MySpace has a responsibility to get them off the site."
However, Tom Newton, product manager of SmoothWall, believes the responsibility also lies with parents, schools, internet cafes and anyone else who provides a child with internet access.
“Social networking sites have a responsibility to protect their users, and the fact that MySpace has commissioned a survey following reports that the site is being used for unscrupulous purposes shows how seriously it takes this,” he said.
“As much as there is a move to crack down on dodgy websites, the seemingly exponential growth of the internet means that the dangers children are exposed to is not going to go away. Networking sites will never be 100 per cent safe, so the message for parents and educational institutions is simple: better safe than sorry, block access if you are unsure.”