Chat rooms are sometimes dangerous, because they can easily be used by predators who want to groom children or teens for abusive, murderous or sexual relationships. However, if used safely, there is nothing inherently dangerous in a chat room. In most cases, the other people in the chat room cannot see members' real names or their addresses.

Although the anonymity of a chat room provides a small layer of safety to people using the chat room, it can also be abused. For instance, if a child or teenager is talking to someone online, the other person can pretend that they are also a kid, even if they are really an adult. This scenario can even happen among adults when one of the people chatting paints themselves as someone or something that they are not.

As the predator chats with his prey, he tries to build a relationship and convince the other person to trust him. Teenagers often have relatively emotionally turbulent lives and may see the predator as the only person who really understands or cares about them.

Once a predator has convinced his prey to trust him, he can start to solicit private details. He may even try to arrange a meeting.