Loudoun Country launches ComputerCop program to help parents monitor kids' activity

Loudoun County police have launches a computer program to help parents protect their children online.

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On Wednesday, the sheriff's office unveiled the software, called ComputerCop.

“It’s a program that scans potentially objectionable images and text, drawing from a database of over 4,000 red-flagged words, and phrases that are associated with pornography, drugs and violence,” said Deputy Specialist James Spurlock of the Loudoun County Sheriff's office.

Parents can run the program and have the option to view and permanently delete the filtered information.

“Some parental monitoring programs are very complicated, they require lots of downloads. You have to be computer savvy. This program... I think any parent can put this disk and navigate through the program,” Spurlock said.

He educates parents on the potential dangers of the web. As a father of a teenager, he also knows the importance of an open dialogue about Internet safety.

“Not that you have to confront your children about what you find, but if you start to see images or text messages that they're sending out and its talking about where they live at, or how old they are, or their gender or ethnicity, that's information that online predators use to track down children,” Spurlock said.

Sheriff Stephen Simpson says it's an extra tool that will give parents a leg-up as technology continues to advance.

Confiscated drug money helped pay for this initiative, so all of the software is free, and can be picked up at the loudoun county sheriff's office, and its sub-stations.in leesburg, kathy park, nc8>

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