Human traffickers are increasingly turning to social media in order to find new victims.
According to Peru’s Public Ministry, reports of human trafficking have recently risen by 53%. El Comercio reports that the increase may be due in part to the fact that human traffickers are learning to effectively use social media as a means to find new victims.
This strategy, writes El Comercio, is especially dangerous for young potential victims. 53% of victims of human trafficking are between the ages of 13 and 17, and many young people are not well-informed about the reality of trafficking. Combine this lack of information with the high volume of teenagers and young adults who regularly use social media, and a dangerous situation is created.
El Comercio reports that most victims are trafficked from Lima, Loreto, Ucayali, San Martín, Madre de Dios, Puno, Cusco, and the border areas near Tumbes and Piura.
Peru is considered a human trafficking by the U.S. State Department, as the country is a source, destination, and transit point for traffickers and their victims. Many victims of human trafficking in Peru work in mining or connected industries, including the sex trade in mining cities.