We all know that the internet poses challenges and opportunities that mirror real life. It’s sometimes easier for someone to fraud you online than in person. Also, if you have children, you should make it a point to be aware of where they go when they are online. You should also know who they’re talking to as well as what information they are sharing about themselves. MySpace.com has received a lot of attention lately because of what teenagers are sharing with each others and strangers. It has become a haven for predators. Rather than focus my attention on MySpace, I’m going to provide you with several resources that you may use to find out information about someone. It’s intended to help you be more aware of your surroundings and to do what’s necessary to protect your family. I’ve chosen not to focus on MySpace simple because next year it will be some other chat room, social networking site, blog, or whatever. This information will apply regardless of the site getting all the attention.

The first site I’d like to mention is one that you can enter your home address and it will pull up any registered sex offenders close to your house. The site is http://www.familywatchdog.us/. It display the offender in one of three colors. Either red, yellow, or green depending on the offense level. It provides the individuals picture, their convection, address, and the distance they may live from your house.

The next site will allow you to do many interesting things including reverse phone number lookup. If you’re receiving annoying calls and only have the number you can discover who owns the number. The site is at http://www.melissadata.com/Lookups/.

This next site allows you to perform general background checks on anyone for a fee. It’s at http://123nc.com/. It will show you any criminal offense that anyone has been convicted of within North Carolina. If you own a business you can use this site in run background checks on applicants.

The last site does both background and credit checks for a fee. It’s at http://www.integrascan.com/.

I hope this information is useful to you in that it helps you become more aware of your surroundings. I’m not providing this information to you so that you can harass anyone regardless of what they may have been convicted of in their past. You do not want to break the law yourself. I also assume no responsibility for you actions and how you may use the information provided by the sites.