Tool helps spot new child porn online
ancaster University is at the forefront of research detecting new child porn published online. The new tool developed in an international research project including the university, automatically identifies new or previously unknown child porn using computers.
Source: Lancaster University
There are hundreds of searches for child abuse images every second worldwide, resulting in hundreds of thousands of child sexual abuse images and videos being shared every year. The people who produce child sexual abuse media are often abusers themselves – the US National Center for Missing and Exploited Children found that 16 percent of the people who possess such media had directly and physically abused children.
Claudia Peersman, lead author of the study from Lancaster University’s School of Computing and Communications said: “Identifying new child sexual abuse media is critical because it can indicate recent or ongoing child abuse. And because originators of such media can be hands-on abusers, their early detection and apprehension can safeguard their victims from further abuse.
“With iCOP we hope we’re giving police the tools they need to catch child sexual abusers early based on what they’re sharing online. When I was just starting as a junior researcher, I attended a presentation by an Interpol police officer who was arguing that the academic world should focus more on developing solutions to detect child abuse media online. “
He said: ‘You know those sweet toddler hands with dimple-knuckles? I see them online… every day.’ “From that moment I knew I wanted to do something to help stop this. With iCOP we hope we’re giving police the tools they need to catch paedophiles early.”
The research behind this technology was conducted in the international research project iCOP – Identifying and Catching Originators in P2P Networks – by researchers at Lancaster University, the German Research
Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), and
University College Cork, Ireland.