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Reverse Search Feature Added to Ohio Sex Offender Database Tool

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The state is working to keep up with the ever-changing world of online predators. As Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports, the latest effort includes offering a new feature in its sex offender search tool.

Thursday, July 3, 2014 at 12:51 pm

If someone gets a suspicious call or questions a fishy email, they can now enter that information into a state search engine to find out if the person on the other end is a registered sex offender.

This reverse search is a new tool featured on the attorney general’s online database, accessible through the attorney general’s website.

Brant Cook with the AG’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation said this can be very helpful for parents who are worried about their children’s online activity and who they talk to -- especially since the revamp includes a search function for social media user names and gamer tags.

“Gamer tags are critical," Cook said. "There can also be, with many games, a social networking aspect where gamers are talking back and forth. So that comes back directly to the ‘Know who your child’s friends are.’”

Ohio joins seven other states in using this kind of technology with its sex offender search tool.