Boy Scouts of America 12,000 Sex Abuse Victims is Normal

The Boy Scouts of American is no stranger to controversy, and now new information is shedding light on how many leaders were actually involved in a sex abuse scandal.

According to official records of the Boy Scouts, more than 12,000 children were sexually assaulted while in the scout program. The records, which date back to the 1940s, show that more than 8,000 leaders have been accused of these acts. Yes, that’s EIGHT THOUSAND PREDATORS.

Basically, this information was known to the organization, but only in the past 10 years or so had the vast scale of this abuse been exposed. What’s even worse is that this is probably not all of the incidents that have occurred. These are only those that have been exposed. Only the organization itself knows the true numbers of victims and perpetrators, and it has never released any of the names of the abusers. Though it is believed that these leaders were removed from their positions, the Boy Scouts never released their names to the public.

There are more than two million members of Boy Scouts of America, and hundreds of members are expected to file suit against the organization. One sexual abuse attorney, who has taken a prominent role in the case, has signed with more than 180 victims.

Currently, Boy Scouts of America have thousands of acres of land across the country, and the value of that land is very high. However, it is expected that the organization could declare bankruptcy, which has the victims in this case in an uproar as they would get little to no compensation.

Michael Surbaugh, Chief Executive of Boy Scouts of America, recently made a public apology. He said that the organization is offering support for the victims and members of the organization are outraged by the number of times that individuals took advantage of innocent children. He also said that they all care deeply about the victims and that they apologize to anyone who, during their time with the Boy Scouts, was harmed. He said that they believe the victims’ stories and will pay for counseling for any victim that requires it. He also encouraged any and all victims to come forward.

If the Boy Scouts of American files bankruptcy, it could continue to operate while keeping its information and assets safe. Last year, the organization filed suit against several of its insurers and claimed that the companies refused to cover its liabilities. The insurance companies banded together and said that the Boy Scouts failed to take precautionary action in these situations. As of now, all of those cases are still pending. Here’s the most disturbing aspect of this story: This is normal. Yup. Normal. That doesn’t mean it’s OK or acceptable behavior, but it’s the way it’s always been. If it’s happened consecutively over the past 70 years, and its part of the culture, the same way the Catholic church works, or thousands of teachers and coaches or others in professions who work with kids, its normal. Predators go to where their prey is. And the sooner you begin to have these uncomfortable conversations with your kids, the better chance you have of preventing this in your family. Care to discuss?

Robert Siciliano personal security and identity theft expert and speaker is the author of Identity Theft Privacy: Security Protection and Fraud Prevention: Your Guide to Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft and Computer Fraud. See him knock’em dead in this Security Awareness Training video.

World’s dumbest Rapist: Tells Victim to call Boyfriend

What’s sicker than raping a woman? Ordering her to phone her boyfriend so he could listen to the rape. But that was a good thing for a woman who was kidnapped last year. Her abductor drove her to the parking lot of an adult entertainment store in Georgia with the intent of raping her, reports WSB-TV.

1SDBut the abductor, Robert Giles, first ordered her to call her boyfriend so he could listen in. Smart move, dude: The victim called 911 instead. However, she pretended the man on the other end of the call was her boyfriend.

The victim explained the circumstance to her “boyfriend,” who quickly realized what was actually happening. And the 911 operator, Deonte Smith, went along with it, posing as her boyfriend, all the while gathering data to locate Giles.

Soon, the police nabbed Giles on the spot.

What can we learn about this event?

  • If you’re abducted, keep your cool and think hard. Do not be afraid to be strategic.
  • Of course, you want to prevent ending up in such a situation in the first place. A man doesn’t just randomly abduct a woman. He observes them first, to see who seems like they’d put up the least resistance.
  • If you are ever abducted, holler as loud as you can, “Fire! Fire!” People are more likely to come bolting out of the woodwork to help out when they hear “Fire!” rather than hearing just screaming. Even if you yell “Rape!” there’s bound to be a few listeners who will think this is a prank. Yelling “Fire!” is not associated with pranks.
  • If you notice a man following you, throw a curve ball. Predators are easily stunned by curve balls and paralyzed with confusion and trepidation. For example, if he sees you spit on the ground as he’s walking behind you, this will likely make him hesitant to grab you.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings. Never text while walking in public! Take out the earbuds and keep your ears on high alert.
  • Sign up for martial arts/self-defense lessons. Yes, they really work when taught by a highly qualified instructor.

Robert Siciliano CEO of, personal security and identity theft expert and speaker is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Identity Was Stolen. See him knock’em dead in this identity theft preventionvideo.

How to stop Teenage Sexting

Sexting is the act of sending images of a sexual nature via cell phone, often naked pictures. Because texting technology is so readily available and easy to understand, parents should be quite leery of telling themselves, “Oh, MY kid would never do that!” Studies showy your kid already did it. 12-17 year olds sext. And studies show 50-75 year olds do it as much as 18-25 year olds. Picture that!

bioSexting is not the same as when a teen shows a naked Polaroid photo to the crowd huddled in front of the school lockers. The eight people that where huddled is where the image stops. If a digital photo is shared via sexting, the whole world could be viewing it within 30 minutes. Kids have taken their lives as a result of this same scenario.

The bigger issue is that teens normally don’t think about the illegality of sexting images of kids under 18. In many cases this is considered child pornography. Kids have been prosecuted as perpetrators of child porn when they themselves were the victims. So parents, ask your kids, “Did you know that if you get caught sexting, you could be convicted of child porn and—for the rest of your life—be a registered sex offender?”

And why might your kid sext?

  • The same reason they might smoke or drink: peer pressure.
  • To feel grown-up or the thrill of doing something “naughty.”
  • Low self-esteem.
  • To get the recipient interested in them.
  • Coercion. Every child connected to the internet is susceptible. If your kid is unsupervised online, there is a solid chance they have connected to a predator.

A teen could end up a horrible statistic and in other cases get five years’ probation—just for sending out one nude photo.

Suppose your child never sexts. Don’t count out the possibility that they are capable of forwarding a received sext. In the eyes of the law, forwarding someone else’s sext is just as illegal as being the original sexter.

More Tips on Prevention

  • In a relaxed setting, discuss digital privacy with your kids.
  • For kids new to cell phone use or about to be, inform them you will conduct random monitoring of images. Tell this also to kids who’ve been using the phones for a while. Make sure they understand you’ll be looking at images, not reading texts.
  • Invite them to share with you what they know about classmates who sext.
  • Present yourself as their ally, not some judge or critic. Let them know that you know why teens are tempted to sext. Get them talking.
  • Inform them that you’ll be legally required to turn their phone in to the police if you find lewd images on it. Otherwise, as a parent, you are an accomplice to a crime.
  • Ask your kids how they’d manage life living with a child pornography conviction.
  • Make cell phones prohibited in their bedroom at night.
  • Keep the phone chargers in your room.

Habitual sexting, like any ongoing bad behavior, is a symptom of skewered family dynamics. Kids from a stable home life where they feel valued are less likely to get hooked on sexting.

Robert Siciliano is an identity theft expert to discussing  identity theft prevention.

Sex Offender Registration Force Some to Hide

In Cleveland the county Sheriff checks to see if registered sex offenders are in fact living where they say they do. Determining the currently location of a sex offender helps law enforcement and the community to know if the sex offender is in compliance or maybe hiding and possibly up to no good. One would think if they are compliant, they are trying to assimilate.

Certainly they can be up to no good if they are compliant with the registry, but this is just another reason to check on them. In Cleveland about 2/3rds claim to live at a mens homeless shelter. But reports state none of them have been there in months.

The Plain Dealer reports Increasingly stringent limitations on where sex offenders can live have driven many to register under false addresses and live off the grid — beyond monitoring and treatment, say sex offender management and re-entry specialists.

And as the county’s list of sex offenders grows to more than 3,000, with fewer resources to monitor them, it is impossible to know how many might have registered under one location and are living at another.

Many state laws restrict sex offenders from living within 1000 feet of a school or park for obvious reasons. In the plains of Africa, the lions follow the herds of gazelle to stalk their prey. Sex offenders go where their prey is.  In response laws were set up to prohibit such behavior.  In some states where no laws exists many towns have their own ordinances with the same restrictions. This “not in my back yard” strategy seems to be backfiring in many municipalities.

Regardless, it is necessary for you to keep tabs in your own neighborhood of who lives there and their history. Checking names to determine if they are a sex offender is often effective in determining if they have been convicted of an offence.

Robert Siciliano is a Personal Security Expert and Adviser to For more information see Intelius at Sex Offender Check to reduce your chances of encountering a bad guy. See him discussing Sex Offenders on Fox Boston. (Disclosures)

Sex Offender Registry: Good or Bad?

Millions of parents, employers, and others are concerned about sex offenders living in their neighborhoods. It is imperative that a citizen has the right to find identifying location information on sex offenders where they reside, work, and go to school.

There is a debate on Forbes about sex offender registries value and whether or not they actually protect citizens.

Understand that a sex predator is “normal”. It’s their version of normal. It’s the way they are wired. This breed of human may look like you and I, they often appear to act like us, but their thought process is one that differs significantly from ours. They have an entirely different set of boundaries that doesn’t equate to what most people agree to as proper. Talk to any psychologist or psychiatrist and they will tell you there are many versions of what normal is.

Sex offender registries have been around for over a decade and are often decentralized public and private resources.

For more than 50 years, states like California have required sex offenders to register with their local law enforcement agencies. However, information on the whereabouts of these sex offenders was not available to the public until the implementation of the Child Molester Identification Line in July 1995. The information available was further expanded by California’s Megan’s Law in 1996 (Chapter 908, Stats. of 1996). Since that time sex offender registries have popped up in every state and federally.

Some argue that people who end up on the different registries that were accused of crimes such as urinating in public, or an 18 year old having consensual sex with a 17 year old is a reason why the sex offender registries need to be abolished. I agree that laws need to be revamped and some sex offenders need to be re-categorized, But the mere fact that we have hundreds of thousands of living breathing predators in our midst, it’s definitely necessary to take a head count and keep tabs on their whereabouts.

Robert Siciliano is a Personal Security Expert and Adviser to For more information see Intelius at Sex Offender Check to reduce your chances of encountering a bad guy. See him discussing sex offenders on CBS Boston. (Disclosures)

Sex Offender Volunteered For High Football Team

In Seattle a Level III sex offender was allowed to work as a volunteer with the Evergreen High School football team, according to school officials. It was the head coach’s responsibility to see that the volunteer passed a background check before having contact with students.

Two female students who serve as managers with the football team alerted authorities after the volunteer made comments that made them feel uncomfortable. He was subsequently arrested for failing to register as a sex offender.

Sex offenders are “offensive”  because of their nature. It’s how they are wired. They simply don’t know any better. Even if they know right from wrong, they can’t help themselves; it’s their “way”. Pit-bulls are often aggressive dogs that attack for no reason. It’s their nature. Golden Retrievers are big dopey dogs who just want to play and show affection. It’s their nature.

It’s disappointing that the coach didn’t do his job properly. What may have happened is the coach took a liking to the volunteer and “trusted” that he didn’t have a record. The coach like most people didn’t want to believe he was in the presence of a bad egg. None of us want to admit we are in the presence of evil.

His denial and lack of accountability put his students at risk. Those days should be over because we live in such a litigious society. However our “niceness” often makes us stupid. The girls on the other hand who spoke up were immediately listened to and were taken seriously. Good for them. 10 years ago, and even today sexual harassment of this nature would be blamed on the women and swept under the rug. Fortunately we are becoming more civilized.

Robert Siciliano is a Personal Security Expert and Adviser to For more information see Intelius at Sex Offender Check to reduce your chances of encountering a bad guy. See him discussing Sex Offenders on Fox Boston. (Disclosures)

Baseball Coach Listed as A Sex Offender

In  Ostego Michigan a local summer baseball league coach was been removed from his position Friday after school officials found out he was listed on the Michigan State Sex Offender Registry.

He was coaching for a week when am aware parent notified the school, he was a sex offender from 1996. As a parent, you should be the one notifying school officials because you are aware of these issues. You can do a search on “sex offender registry” to locate those in your area and check out Neighborhood Watch.

The parent telling the school shows a flaw in the schools system of effectively vetting out someone who has a past of inappropriate behavior with children. The school district went on to say they screen volunteers in the hundreds of background checks they do his may have been overlooked. What is also a possibility is he lied on his application which skewered the results.

Officials point to the sex offender putting his name alongside his father’s name on the application as his father may have some ties to the league. This may have been done to confuse the background check process.

If you are a sex offender, and you have been prosecuted for something you did to a kid, what the heck could possibly be your motivation work want to work alongside kids, and possible discovered? There’s no way to rationalize irrational behavior.  I think these kids and their parents dodged a bullet.

That parent who brought to to the attention of the district is a hero.

Robert Siciliano is a Personal Security Expert and Adviser to For more information see Intelius at Sex Offender Check to reduce your chances of encountering a bad guy. See him discussing personal security on NBC Boston. (Disclosures)

Sex Offenders and Predators and Criminals Oh My!

The wizard in the Wizard of Oz wasn’t so much a wizard at all. But in the end he did have some sage advice that he bestowed upon Dorothy to give her direction and guidance. I’m no wizard either. But I have enough of a clue that it might benefit you from reading these posts here and there.

Anyone who follows my posts knows I discuss numerous issues revolving around personal security. My fascination with the bad guy and what you need to do to protect yourself is what gets me out of bed every day. I don’t worry so much, but I’m concerned. I see news reports every single day of people of all ages being violated in ways that bother me to the point of having to act. And there seems to be no end to it.

I feel that if I don’t do something about it then who will? Fortunately there are companies that I’m grateful to work with that support my beliefs and provide products and services to mitigate any harm that might come to you. So they help me spread the message and I thank you for coming back to learn and when needed, supporting them.

There are a few issues that I tap into every week that there is a ton to write about and unfortunately the issues will never go away. Sex offenders make the news multiple times daily and I could write 100 articles about them. They attack children and often attack women, and sometimes men. Children and their parents, elderly and women on the dating scene are readers I want to educate.

I find that predators naturally go after those who may be considered a bit more vulnerable or are often entering situations where they are more vulnerable. Either way, my goal is to empower the reader and provide them with options and solutions so they don’t end up a victim.

Going forward you will see numerous posts on sex offenders, who they are and where they are, dating in all its forms and how to protect yourself, criminals in our society and who they have access to and how to protect yourself from them. This will be a constant beating of the drum that at times may be repetitive, but repetition as they say is definitely the mother of skill.

I always appreciate your feedback and comments. Thank you so much for your time and attention, and please keep your head up and pay attention.

Robert Siciliano is a Personal Security Expert and Adviser to For more information see Intelius at Sex Offender Check and Date Check and Neighborhood Watch to reduce your chances of encountering a bad guy. See him discussing Safe Personal Dating on Tyra. (Disclosures)

Law enforcement officers keep tough watch on sex offenders

In Colorado law enforcement officers are scouring the state to make sure sex offenders aren’t hiding from the law.

“Operation Sheperd launched into action this month. Mesa County Sheriff’s Office Deputies and Grand Junction Police Department Officers are crisscrossing Grand Junction to make sure registered sex offenders are living where they reported they are. These officials randomly visit homes of offenders, some of them convicted of molesting children. It’s all to keep strict tabs on these offenders, so that they don’t escape the watchful eye of police. “We do take the verification of addresses seriously, and we do continually check,” says the Grand Junction Police Department.”

Verifying addresses and keeping tabs on a sex offenders whereabouts always keeps sex offenders in check. It is important that local law enforcement always has tabs on them due to the nature of their crimes. We hear too often that sex offenders are released then repeat their behavior. It is unfortunately a part of their nature.

Even though law enforcement is doing their job, you need to continually scan the internet and seek out sex offenders in your neighborhoods.

“Operation Sheperd has captured 180 sex offenders who were not complying with their registry so far. Officers across Colorado have completed nearly 4,000 checks on offenders.”

Wow. Sex offenders often don’t register because they don’t want to be found or because they are living in an area where they aren’t allowed to be, such as near a school or park. Based on these numbers you should never simply trust that your new next door neighbor is “good”. Bad comes in many different faces.

Robert Siciliano is a Personal Security Expert and Adviser to For more information see Intelius at Sex Offender Check to reduce your chances of encountering a bad guy. See him discussing personal security on NBC Boston. (Disclosures)