'"There are several messaging applications, picture sharing applications, that are giving kids a false sense of security in thinking that these images will be destroyed, but really they are coming back to haunt them. "
Tracy Gonzalez is the Public Information Officer for the San Angelo Police Department, but also serves as the Social Media Officer.
After the recent arrest of US Federal Agent Forrest William Johnson in Austin for online solicitation of a minor, Gonzalez wants to spread the word that teens should never trust anyone they meet online.
"We need to speak candidly about the dangers and whats out there. Again, we don't want to scare them, but we need them to know that there are bad people out there, they are waiting to get that sensitive information and that's dangerous."
Predators are now using smartphone apps such as Instagram, KIK and Snapchat to solicit minors that believe they are sending pictures or messaging other teens.
"With all of the introduction of these apps, that allow photo-sharing, video-sharing, it just really shortens the distance between the predator, and the youth, and makes them more accessable."
Nationally one in seven children are victims of online solicitation and according to the SAPD, in 2012 there were two reported incidents in San Angelo and Gonzalez says many cases go unreported.
"Kids are either afraid, they are embarrassed of what has happened, or they are afraid that if they do speak up, the parents will ban them from using the internet all together."
Predators can reach minors through chat rooms, social media and even celebrity fan pages.