Established in April 2016, The Guardians of the North have been aiding in ensuring the safety of children online.
In the age of the internet where access to social media and communication platforms happen with great ease, children are given access to forms of communication that they can use to converse with friends and family. With the use of mobile phones introduced this allows said communication platforms to be accessed on the move and often in private.
The advancements of technology not only give the access to children but also those looking for new innovative ways to communicate with children. Predators and those looking to gain the attention of children will use popular platforms and will often mask their identity in the hopes if gaining the children’s trust, this is what Guardians of the North aim to combat and have done so with success in a 12 month period.
GOTN use volunteers to spearhead the campaign against online paedophiles by using “decoys” to act as children online using various social media platforms. All of our decoys state they’re underage to anybody that initiates contact, this is done on several occasions during a single chat log. During the following days, weeks or even months the chat logs will often elevate to sexual content which is ALWAYS initiated by the predator.
Once The Guardians are satisfied that the predator is in fact a threat to children based on how they have conducted themselves during communication, they will arrange for the decoy to meet the predator in a public place. Once they attend the meeting, instead of a child, the predator is face to face with the Guardians who then pass all evidence to the police and hand the case over to be passed through the justice system.
Some often refer to Guardians of the North as a “Vigilante” group that have decided to take the law into their own hands but a more fitting label would be that they are a “Public Service”. The Guardians offer their service and continue their work because the Police Forces are so stretched and so underfunded that they cannot realistically pay decoys to do what the Guardians do. It is unfortunate that the services are required but as long as it is required it will be there keeping the online presence of children safe.
What is Guardians of the North?