The Cult Awareness Network (CAN) was an anti-cult organization created by deprogrammer Ted Patrick that provided information on groups it considered "cults", as well as support and referrals to deprogrammers. After CAN lost a lawsuit and filed for bankruptcy in 1996, Scientologists acquired CAN's name and assets, including phone numbers and records, and reopened the organization under the name New Cult Awareness Network. The Church of Scientology had previously been one of CAN's main targets.
Ted Patrick founded FREECOG (Parents Committee to Free Our Sons and Daughters from the Children of God) in 1971 and the Citizen's Freedom Foundation (CFF) in 1974. These two organizations merged into the Cult Awareness Network in 1984. By 1991, the Cult Awareness Network had twenty-three chapters dedicated to monitoring over two hundred groups that it referred to as "mind control cults".
Patricia Ryan, the daughter of US Congress