White Van Danger: Is It Real?
Facebook and other social media are flooded with posts warning people to be on the lookout for white vans.
According to the posts, human traffickers are snatching up women and children to either sell into prostitution or even sell steal their body parts to sell for transplant.
Law enforcement agencies all over the country have been receiving calls from concerned citizens. So what’s really going on? While no one can say that there’s no possibility that someone driving a white van might be up to no good, there’s no way to say for certain someone driving a blue SUV might not be up to no good.
Law enforcement agencies across the country say there’s no known gang of white van driving weirdos snatching people off the street.
Facebook actually had a team of independent fact-checkers look into the claims and found there were no actual incidents of kidnapping. Part of this fear comes from an old stereotype that white panel vans are used by criminals, an image that often turns up in memes and other jokes.
While human trafficking is a legitimate problem, most people involved in it aren’t kidnapped by strangers. They are lured in by people who are pretending to be their friends who spend a great deal of time grooming them.
While you should never accept rides from strangers no matter what they happen to be driving and illegal and suspicious behavior should be reported to authorities, a white van simply driving or parked by the road is not a cause for concern by itself.
So, now you let us know. White Van Danger: Is It Real?
Click here to learn more about human trafficking and how victims are targeted.
Click here to learn more about how this rumor spread.
Click here to find out how to talk to kids about human trafficking.
You may also like our story about the FBI warning about photo apps. Click to read.