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Porn Use Statistics

 

Wisechoice is the tool which can put an end to your internet pornography use.

Most of us think that we are the exception in our porn use.-  But statistics tell us that 50% of men on the web are accessing internet porn and the destruction to our homes, our reputations and our families can be huge. I developed Wisechoice to give us a way of escape from porn use and the consequences of it. The following statistics show just what an impact that internet porn is having in our society.

I urge you to put a wall between you and internet porn.

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We offer a filter that cannot be bypassed except by telephoning our support staff and identifying yourself as the primary user. Wisechoice is also effective for families and guarding children, it is highly customizable. We also provide accountability reporting at no extra charge. For more information go to www.wisechoice.net

                    INTERNET PORNOGRAPHY

                               Statistics taken from www.enough.org

 

  • Worldwide pornography revenue in 2006 was $97.06 billion. Of that, approximately $13 billion was in the United States (Internet Filter Review, 2006).
  • Every second, $3,075.64 is being spent on pornography, 28,258 Internet viewers are viewing pornography, 372 Internet users are typing adult search terms into search engines, and every 39 minutes, a new pornographic video is made in the United States (Internet Filter Review, 2006).
  • 79% of youth unwanted exposure to pornography occurs in the home (Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later, 2006).

 

 


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CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

  • Child pornography is one of the fastest growing businesses online, and the content is becoming much worse. In 2008, Internet Watch Foundation found 1,536 individual child abuse domains. (Internet Watch Foundation. Annual Report, 2008).
  • Of all known child abuse domains, 58 percent are housed in the United States (Internet Watch Foundation. Annual Report, 2008).
  • The fastest growing demand in commercial websites for child abuse is for images depicting the worst type of abuse, including penetrative sexual activity involving children and adults and sadism or penetration by an animal (Internet Watch Foundation. Annual Report, 2008).
  • In a study of arrested child pornography possessors, 40 percent had both sexually victimized children and were in possession of child pornography. Of those arrested between 2000 and 2001, 83 percent had images involving children between the ages 6 and 12; 39 percent had images of children between ages 3 and 5; and 19% had images of infants and toddlers under age 3 (National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, Child Pornography Possessors Arrested in Internet-Related Crimes: Findings fro the National Juvenile Online Victimization Study.

2005).

  • Child pornography has become a $3 billion annual industry (Top Ten Reviews, 2005).


CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE

  • Of substantiated reports of child abuse in 2005, 23 percent for teens ages 16 and older involved physical abuse and 17 percent involved sexual abuse. Among substantiated reports for children ages 0-3, 12 percent involved physical abuse and 2 percent involved sexual abuse (America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being. Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics, 2007).
  • A New Zealand Internal Affairs study suggests that there is an association between viewing child pornography and committing child sexual abuse (New Zealand's Department of Internal Affairs. Internet Traders of Child Pornography: Profiling Research. By Caroline Sullivan. October 2005. January 10, 2006).
  • The sexual victimization of children is overwhelming in magnitude yet largely unrecognized and underreported. Research indicates that 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually victimized before adulthood (National Center for Missing and Exploited Children).
  • One in four women reported childhood sexual abuse and in most cases perpetrated by males (Long-Term Consequences of Childhood Sexual Abuse by Gender of Victim. Volume 28, Issue 5. The American Journal of Preventative Medicine. June 2005).


MOBILE PORN

  • In 2005, worldwide revenue from mobile phone pornography is expected to rise to $1 billion and could grow to three times that number or more within a few years (Bryan-Low, Cassel and Pringle, David. "Sex Cells: Wireless Operators Find That Racy Cellphone Video Drives Surge in Broadband Use." The Wall Street Journal. May 12, 2005.)
  • According to IDC, a technology research firm, by the end of 2004 approximately 21 million 5- to 19-year-olds had wireless phones.
  • Adult content on mobile telephones and other portable devices is anticipated to hit $1 billion in worldwide revenues during 2005, according to market research firm Juniper Research. (Juniper Research, "Adult to Mobile: Personal Services," February 2005)

 


ONLINE SEXUAL PREDATORS

  • Currently, there are over 644,865 Registered Sex Offenders in the United States; an estimated 10,000 have been lost in the system (National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, 2008).
  • The predominant sex crime scenario doesn't involve violence or stranger molesters posing online as children; only 5 percent of offenders concealed the fact they were adults from their victims. Almost 80 percent of offenders were explicit about their intentions with youth. In 73 percent of crimes, youth go to meet the offender on multiple occasions for multiple sexual encounters (NJOV Study, 2007).
  • Teens are willing to meet with strangers: 16 percent of teens considered meeting someone they've only talked to online and 8 percent have actually met someone they only knew online (Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later. 2006).
  • Four percent of all youth Internet users received aggressive sexual solicitations, which threatened to spill over into "real life". These solicitors asked to meet the youth in person, called them on the telephone, or sent offline mail, money, or gifts. Also 4 percent of youth Internet users had distressing sexual solicitations that left them feeling upset of extremely afraid (Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later, 2006).

 


 

             YOUTH             

YOUTH AND GENERAL INTERNET USE

  • K-1st grade students access the Internet using various devices for a variety of purposes, including playing online games and communicating with other people. Online gaming is increasingly popular among younger students. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 48 percent of students K-1st grade level interact with people on Web sites, while 50 percent indicate that their parents watch them when they use a computer, leaving the other half of those youngsters more prone to being exposed to predation behaviors or other threats posed by online strangers or even persons they know or regard as friends. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 48 percent of K-1st reported viewing online content that made them feel uncomfortable, of which 72 percent reported the experience to a grownup, meaning that one in four children did not. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 32 percent of teens clear the browser history to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 16 percent have created private e-mail addresses or social networking profiles to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 63 percent of teens said they know how to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 43 percent have closed or minimized the browser at the sound of a parental step. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 11 percent have unlocked/disabled/ parental/filtering controls. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 52 percent of teens have given out personal information online to someone they don't know offline including personal photos and/or physical descriptions of themselves (24 percent). Double the number of teen girls have shared photos or physical descriptions of themselves online as boys. (34 percent girls vs. 15 percent boys) (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 20 percent of teens have engaged in cyberbullying behaviors, including posting mean or hurtful information or embarrassing pictures, spreading rumors, publicizing private communications, sending anonymous e-mails or cyberpranking someone. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • A quarter of teens would be shocked (24 percent), one in five would feel hurt (19 percent) and 34 percent would feel offended if they found out their mother was keeping track of what they do online without their knowledge or permission. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • Looking at a general picture of teen internet adoption, American teens are more wired now than ever before. According to our latest survey, 93 percent of all Americans between 12 and 17 years old use the internet. In 2004, 87 percent were internet users, and in 2000, 73 percent of teens went online. (Lenhart, Amanda and Madden, Mary. Teens, Privacy, and Online Social Networks. Pew Internet and American Life Project, April 18, 2007 http://www.pewinternet.org/pdf...rivacy_SNS_Report_Final.pdf ).
  • Home computers are still overwhelmingly located in open family areas of the home; 74 percent of teens now say the computer they use is in a public place in the home, compared with 73 percent in 2004 and 70 percent in 2000. (Lenhart, Amanda and Madden, Mary. Teens, Privacy, and Online Social Networks. Pew Internet and American Life Project, April 18, 2007 http://www.pewinternet.org/pdf...rivacy_SNS_Report_Final.pdf ).
  • A large majority of teens (71 percent) have established online profiles (including those on social networking sites such as MySpace, Friendster and Xanga), up from 61 percent in 2006. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • The risks to children, particularly teenagers, in cyberspace include exposure to unwanted exposure to sexual material (1 in 3 youth) and harassment -- threatening or other offensive behavior directed at them (1 in 11 youth). (Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later. 2006. National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, Crimes Against Children Research Center, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. December 4, 2006. http://www.unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/CV138.pdf ).
  • 31 percent of 7th to 12th-graders pretended to be older to get onto a website. (Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8-18 Year-Olds. Victoria Rideout, Donald F. Roberts. Ulla G. Foehr. March 2005. The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. 17 November 2006, http://www.kff.org/entmedia/up...f-8-18-Year-olds-Report.pdf ).
  • Nearly one-third (31percent) of 8- to 18-year-olds have a computer in their bedroom, and one in five (20 percent) have an Internet connection there (Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8-18 Year-Olds. Victoria Rideout, Donald F. Roberts. Ulla G. Foehr. March 2005. The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. 17 November 2006, http://www.kff.org/entmedia/up...f-8-18-Year-olds-Report.pdf ).
  • Three in four (74 percent) young people have a home Internet connection (31 percent have high-speed access). Nearly one-third (31 percent) have a computer in their bedroom, and one in five (20 percent) have an Internet connection there. In a typical day, about half of young people (48 percent) go online from home, 20 percent from school, and 16 percent from someplace else (Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8-18 Year-Olds. Victoria Rideout, Donald F. Roberts. Ulla G. Foehr. March 2005. The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. 17 November 2006, http://www.kff.org/entmedia/up...f-8-18-Year-olds-Report.pdf ).
  • Among the 96 percent of young people who have ever gone online, 65 percent say they go online most often from home, 14 percent from school, 7 percent from a friend's house, and 2 percent from a library or other location (Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8-18 Year-Olds. Victoria Rideout, Donald F. Roberts. Ulla G. Foehr. March 2005. The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. 17 November 2006, http://www.kff.org/entmedia/up...f-8-18-Year-olds-Report.pdf ).
  • One in ten young people (13 percent) reports having a handheld device that connects to the Internet (The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Study, March 2005).
  • The most common recreational activities young people engage in on the computer are playing games and communicating through instant messaging (Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8-18 Year-Olds. (Victoria Rideout, Donald F. Roberts, Ulla G. Foehr. March 2005. The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. 17 November 2006, http://www.kff.org/entmedia/up...f-8-18-Year-olds-Report.pdf ).

 


YOUTH AND INTERNET PORNOGRAPHY

  • Of students aged 13 and 14 from schools across Alberta, Canada, 90 percent of males and 70 percent of females reported accessing sexually explicit media content at least once. (Thompson, Sonya. "Study Shows 1 in 3 Boys Heavy Porn Users". University of Alberta Study, 5 March 2007, http://www.healthnews-stat/com...0&keys=porn-rural-teens .)
  • Of students aged 13 and 14 from schools across Alberta, Canada, 4 percent reported viewing pornography on the Internet; 41 percent saw it on video or DVD and 57 percent saw it on a specialty TV channel. (Thompson, Sonya. "Study Shows 1 in 3 Boys Heavy Porn Users". University of Alberta Study, 5 March 2007, http://www.healthnews-stat/com...0&keys=porn-rural-teens .)
  • The study revealed that boys do the majority of deliberate viewing, and a significant minority now plans social time around viewing porn with male friends. (Thompson, Sonya. "Study Shows 1 in 3 Boys Heavy Porn Users". University of Alberta Study, 5 March 2007, http://www.healthnews-stat/com...0&keys=porn-rural-teens .)
  • Porn has become a major presence in the lives of youth, and while a majority of teens surveys said their parents expressed concern about sexual content, that concern has not led to discussion or supervision, and few parents are using available technology to block sexual content. (Thompson, Sonya. "Study Shows 1 in 3 Boys Heavy Porn Users". University of Alberta Study, 5 March 2007, http://www.healthnews-stat/com...0&keys=porn-rural-teens .)
  • The author of the study, Sonya Thompson concluded that parents need to improve dialogue with their children and their own awareness level. They need to be the ones setting the boundaries in the house. (Thompson, Sonya. "Study Shows 1 in 3 Boys Heavy Porn Users". University of Alberta Study, 5 March 2007, http://www.healthnews-stat/com...0&keys=porn-rural-teens .)
  • Forty-two percent of Internet users aged 10 to 17 surveyed said they had seen online pornography in a recent 12-month span. Of those, 66 percent said they did not want to view the images and had not sought them out. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points. The results come from a telephone survey of 1,500 Internet users aged 10 to 17 conducted in 2005, with their parents' consent. (Wolak, Janis, et al. "Unwanted and Wanted Exposure to Online Pornography in a National Sample of Youth Internet Users." Pediatrics 119 (2007); 247-257.)
  • In the survey, most kids who reported unwanted exposure were aged 13 to 17. Still, sizable numbers of 10- and 11-year-olds also had unwanted exposure -- 17 percent of boys and 16 percent of girls that age. (Wolak, Janis, et al. "Unwanted and Wanted Exposure to Online Pornography in a National Sample of Youth Internet Users." Pediatrics 119 (2007); 247-257.)
  • More than one-third of 16- and 17-year-old boys surveyed said they had intentionally visited X-rated sites in the past year. Among girls the same age, 8 percent had done so. (Wolak, Janis, et al. "Unwanted and Wanted Exposure to Online Pornography in a National Sample of Youth Internet Users." Pediatrics 119 (2007); 247-25.)
  • Overall, 34 percent had unwanted exposure to online pornography, up from 25 percent in a similar survey conducted in 1999 and 2000. (Wolak, Janis, et al. "Unwanted and Wanted Exposure to Online Pornography in a National Sample of Youth Internet Users." Pediatrics 119 (2007); 247-257.)
  • Online use that put kids at the highest risk for unwanted exposure to pornography was using file-sharing programs to download images. However, they also stumbled onto X-rated images through other "normal" Internet use, the researchers said, including talking online with friends, visiting chat rooms and playing games. (Wolak, Janis, et al. "Unwanted and Wanted Exposure to Online Pornography in a National Sample of Youth Internet Users." Pediatrics 119 (2007); 247-257.)
  • Filtering and blocking software helped prevent exposure, but was not 100 percent effective, the researchers said. (Wolak, Janis, et al. "Unwanted and Wanted Exposure to Online Pornography in a National Sample of Youth Internet Users." Pediatrics 119 (2007); 247-257.)In 2000, more than one-third of youth Internet users (34 percent) saw sexual material online they did not want to see in the past year compared to one-quarter (25 percent) in 2005 (Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later. 2006. National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, Crimes Against Children Research Center, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. December 4, 2006. http://www.unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/CV138.pdf ).
  • More than three-quarters of the unwanted exposures (79 percent) happened at home. Nine (9) percent happened at school, 5 percent happened at friends' homes, and 5 percent happened in other places including libraries (Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later. 2006. National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, Crimes Against Children Research Center, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. December 4, 2006. http://www.unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/CV138.pdf ).
  • According to a New Zealand Internal Affairs study, the largest single age group viewing child pornography is young people aged 15 to 19, accounting for a quarter of 202 convicted child porn users. (New Zealand's Department of Internal Affairs. Internet Traders of Child Pornography: Profiling Research. By Caroline Sullivan. October 2005. January 10, 2006. http://www.dia.govt.nz/pubform...text-align:right'/a> ).
  • Nine out of 10 children aged between eight and 16 have viewed pornography on the Internet. In most cases, the sex sites were accessed unintentionally when a child, often in the process of doing homework, used a seemingly innocent sounding word to search for information or pictures. (London School of Economics January 2002).

 


YOUTH ACTING OUT

  • The number of cases in which children received court orders or warnings for sex offenses has jumped by 20 percent in the past three years; experts blame the Internet, saying that the youth behavior has been changed by ready access to sexual imagery. ("Web Is Blamed for 20 Percent Leap in Sex Attacks by Children". This is London. 3 March 2007, www.thisislondon.co.uk).

 


YOUTH, ONLINE PRIVACY & SOCIAL NETWORKING

  • Frequently children in 4th-6th grade levels engage in social networking activities. In the process they post personal, potentially exploitable, information about themselves online. Specifically, and within the last school year: 16% posted personal interests online, 15% posted information about their physical activities and 20% gave out their real name. In addition, 5% posted information about their school, 6% posted their home address, 6% posted their phone number and 9% posted pictures of themselves. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • A majority of teens (58 percent) don't think posting photos or other personal info on social networking sites is unsafe. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • Teens readily post personal info online. 64 percent post photos or videos of themselves, while more than half (58 percent) post info about where they live. Females are far more likely than male teens to post personal photos or videos of themselves (70 percent vs. 58 percent). (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • Nearly one in 10 teens (8 percent ) has posted his or her cell phone number online. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • Teens who have online profiles are generally more likely to say it is okay to give out certain pieces of personal information in offline situations than they are to have that information actually posted to their profile. Teens with online profiles have a greater tendency to say it is fine to share where they go to school, their IM screen name, email address, last name and cell phone number with someone they met at a party, when compared with the percentage who actually post that information online. The only piece of information they are more likely to share online rather than in person with a new acquaintance is the city and state where they live. (Lenhart, Amanda and Madden, Mary. Teens, Privacy, and Online Social Networks. Pew Internet and American Life Project, April 18, 2007 http://www.pewinternet.org/pdf...rivacy_SNS_Report_Final.pdf ).
  • Some 23 percent of teen profile creators say it would be "pretty easy" for someone to find out who they are from the information posted to their profile, and 40 percent of teens with profiles online think that it would be hard for someone to find out who they are from their profile, but that they could eventually be found online. Another 36 percent say they think it would be "very difficult" for someone to identify them from their online profile. (Lenhart, Amanda and Madden, Mary. Teens, Privacy, and Online Social Networks. Pew Internet and American Life Project, April 18, 2007 http://www.pewinternet.org/pdf...rivacy_SNS_Report_Final.pdf ).

 



YOUTH, STRANGERS & SEXUAL SOLICITATIONS

  • 14 percent of students in 10th-12th grade have accepted an invitation to meet an online stranger in-person and 14 percent of students, who are usually the same individuals, have invited an online stranger to meet them in-person. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 14 percent 7th-9th grade students reported that they had communicated with someone online about sexual things; 11 percent of students reported that they had been asked to talk about sexual things online; 8 percent have been exposed to nude pictures and 7 percent were also asked for nude pictures of themselves online. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 59 percent of 7th-9th grade victims said their perpetrators were a friend they know in-person; 36 percent said it was someone else they know; 21 percent said the cyber offender was a classmate; 19 percent indicated the abuser was an online friend; and 16 [ercent said it was an online stranger. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • Nine percent of children in 7th-9th grade have accepted an online invitation to meet someone in-person and 10 percent have asked someone online to meet them in-person. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 13 percent of 2nd-3rd grade students report that they used the Internet to talk to people they do not know, 11 percent report having been asked to describe private things about their body and 10 percent have been exposed to private things about someone else's body. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 69 percent of teens regularly receive personal messages online from people they don't know and most of them don't tell a trusted adult about it. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • While 16 percent of teens say they've considered meeting face-to-face with someone they've talked to only online, that marks a significant drop compared to the 30% of teens who were considering such a meeting in 2006. In 2007, 8 percent of teens say they actually have met in person with someone from the Internet, down from 14 percent in 2006. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • When they receive online messages from someone they don't know, 60 percent of teens say they usually respond only to ask who the person is. Compared to the 2006 survey, there was a 10-percentage-point increase in teens ignoring such messages (57 percent vs. 47 percent). Still, nearly a third of teens (31 percent) say they usually reply and chat with people they don't know, and only 21 percent tell a trusted adult when they receive such messages. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • Approximately 1 in 7 (13 percent) was solicited in 2005, compared to approximately 1 in 5 (19 percent) in 2000; however, aggressive solicitations, in which solicitors made or attempted to make offline contact with youth, did not decline. Four (4) percent of youth Internet users received aggressive solicitations - a proportion similar to the 3 percent who received aggressive solicitations in 2000 (Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later. 2006. National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, Crimes Against Children Research Center, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. December 4, 2006. http://www.unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/CV138.pdf ).
  • Four percent of all youth Internet users in 2005 said online solicitors asked them for nude or sexually explicit photographs of themselves (Online Victimization of Youth: Five Years Later. 2006. National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, Crimes Against Children Research Center, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. December 4, 2006. http://www.unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/CV138.pdf ).
  • In a survey conducted by the Intelligence Group, Dateline questioned 500 teenagers across the country, ages 14-18, about their computer habit. When asked if someone they've met online has wanted to meet them in person, 58 percent said "yes" and 29 percent said they've had a "scary" experience online (Most Teens Say They've Met Strangers Online, MSNBC Interactive, April 26, 2006, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12...T/print/1/displaymode/1098/ ).
  • Half of teens ages 13-18 often communicate through the Internet with someone they have not met in person (Internet Safety: Realistic Strategies & Messages for Kids Taking More and More Risks Online. December 21, 2005. Polly Klaas Foundation. February 17, 2006. http://www.pollyklaas.org/internet-safety/pkfsummary.pdf ).
  • One-third of youth ages 8-18 have talked about meeting someone they have only met through the Internet (Internet Safety: Realistic Strategies & Messages for Kids Taking More and More Risks Online. December 21, 2005. Polly Klaas Foundation. February 17, 2006. http://www.pollyklaas.org/internet-safety/pkfsummary.pdf ).
  • Almost one in eight youth ages 8-18 discovered that someone they were communicating with online was an adult pretending to be much younger (Internet Safety: Realistic Strategies & Messages for Kids Taking More and More Risks Online. December 21, 2005. Polly Klaas Foundation. February 17, 2006. http://www.pollyklaas.org/internet-safety/pkfsummary.pdf ).
  • 30 percent of teenage girls polled by the Girl Scout Research Institute said they had been sexually harassed in a chatroom. Only 7 percent, however, told their mothers or fathers about the harassment because they were worried that their parents would ban them from going online" (Girl Scout Research Institute, 2002).
  • 86 percent of the girls polled said they could chat online without their parents' knowledge, 57 percent could read their parents' e-mail, and 54 percent could conduct a cyber relationship. (Girl Scout Research Institute, 2002).


PARENTS: THE FIRST LINE OF    DEFENSE   

  • 58 percent of moms think the government is not doing enough to keep kids safe online (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 44 percent said they worry about their teens' safety when they are online in their bedroom unsupervised, and about one in four (24 percent) are more concerned about what their children do online than what they do when they are out of the house. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 58 percent of moms believe teens sharing too much personal information is a primary concern. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • About two-thirds of mothers of teens in the United States are just as, or more, concerned about their teenagers' online safety, such as from threatening emails or solicitation by online sexual predators, as they are about drunk driving (62 percent) and experimenting with drugs (65 percent). (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 72 percent of mothers have a verbal agreement with their teen - that is, a discussion of what is and is not allowed online(Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 48 percent of mothers admitted they don't always know what their kids do online. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 26 percent of moms said they have joined and "friended" their child on a social networking site, but many moms are going undercover to monitor their children. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 59 per cent said they check their child's browser history when they are done using the Internet and 15 percent use a software program to monitor what their kids do online. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • Parental awareness of their teens' online activities has risen significantly. This year, 25 percent of teens say their parents know "little" or "nothing" about what they do online, down from 33 percent last year. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • 41 percent of teens report their parents talk to them "a lot" about Internet safety (up five points over 2006), and three out of four say their parents have talked to them in the past year about the potential dangers of posting personal info. The level of parental involvement is higher for younger teens and girls, although it has increased across all age groups and both genders. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • Teens whose parents have talked to them "a lot" about Internet safety are more concerned about the risks of sharing personal info online than teens whose parents are less involved. For instance, 65 percent of those whose parents have not talked to them about online safety post info about where they live, compared to 48 percent of teens with more involved parents. (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • Teens whose parents have talked to them "a lot" about online safety are less likely to consider meeting face to face with someone they met on the Internet (12 percent vs. 20 percent). (National teen Internet survey was funded by Cox Communications in partnership with NCMEC and John Walsh and was conducted in March 2007 among 1,070 teens age 13 to 17. The research was conducted online by TRU. http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/...ocs/survey_results_2007.ppt ).
  • The number one media concern for parents has shifted from television to the Internet, with 85 percent of parents saying that it posed the greatest risk to their children among all forms of media (National Attitudinal Poll, Common Sense Media, June 7, 2006, http://www.commonsensemedia.or...ws/press-releases.php?id=23 ).
  • According to the NAC parent survey of more than 4,000 respondents, 93 percent of parents stated that they know "some" or "a lot" about where their children go and what they do on the Internet. Yet only 42 percent of high school students -- and 62 percent of middle school students stated that they share where they go and what they do on the Internet with their parents (Market Wire. November 6, 2006. i-SAFE Inc. December 12, 2006 http://www.marketwire.com/mw/r...e_html_b1?release_id=180330 ).
  • 42 percent of parents do not review the content of what their teenagers read and/or type in chat rooms or via instant messaging. 58 percent of parents do. (Parents' Internet Monitoring Study. June 2005. Cox Communications, The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and Netsmartz, December 14, 2005, http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/includes/docs/results.pdf ).
  • Teenagers use chat lingo to communicate when Instant Messaging and parents don't know the meaning of some of the most commonly used phrases. 57 percent don't know "LOL" (laughing out loud), 68 percent don't know "BRB" (be right back), and 92 percent don't know "A/S/L" (age, sex, location). (Parents' Internet Monitoring Study. June 2005. Cox Communications, The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and Netsmartz, December 14, 2005, http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/includes/docs/results.pdf ).
  • 95 percent of parents did not recognize other common chat room lingo that teenagers use to let people they are chatting with online know that parents are around including: POS (parents over shoulder); P911 (parents alert). (Parents' Internet Monitoring Study. June 2005. Cox Communications, The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and Netsmartz, December 14, 2005, http://www.cox.com/TakeCharge/includes/docs/results.pdf ).
  • 23 percent of parents have rules about what their kids can do on the computer. (The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Study, March 2005).


          ADULTS         

 

  • 40 million U.S. adults regularly visit Internet pornography websites, and 10% of adults admit to Internet sexual addition (Internet Filter Review, 2006).
  • 20% of men admit accessing pornography at work (Internet Filter Review, 2006).
  • 70% of women say that they keep their cyber activities secret; 17%of women admit to struggling with pornography addiction (Internet Filter Review, 2006).
  • 9.4 women access adult websites each month, and 13% of women admit to accessing pornography at work (Internet Filter Review, 2006).

 

       CHRISTIANS AND SEXUAL             BROKENNESS  

  • Of promise keepers, 53% viewed pornography in the last week (Internet Filter Review, 2006)
  • 47% of Christians say that pornography is a problem in the home (Internet Filter Review, 2006).
  • 50% of all Christian men and 20% of all Christian women are addicted to pornography. 60% of the women who answered the survey admitted to having significant struggles with lust; 40% admitted to being involved in sexual sin in the past year; and 20% of the church-going female participants struggle with looking at pornography on an ongoing basis (Market Wire. August 7, 2006. ChristiaNet.com. December 7, 2006 http://www.marketwire.com/mw/r...e_html_b1?release_id=151336 ).
  • One out of every six women, including Christians, struggles with an addiction to pornography. That's 17 percent of the population, which, according to a survey by research organization Zogby International, is the number of women who truly believe they can find sexual fulfillment on the Internet (Today's Christian Woman, September/October 2003).
  • " ' More than 80 percent of women who have this addiction take it offline,' " says Marnie Ferree. " 'Women, far more than men, are likely to act out their behaviors in real life, such as having multiple partners, casual sex, or affairs' " (Today's Christian Woman, September/October 2003).
  • 51% of pastors say cyberporn is a possible temptation. 37% say it is a current struggle (Christianity Today, Leadership Survey, December 2001). 4 in 10 pastors have visited a porn site (Christianity Today, Leadership Survey, December 2001).

HUMAN SEX TRAFFICKING

  • The International Labor Organization (ILO)--the United Nations (UN) agency charged with addressing labor standards, employment, and social protection issues--estimates there are 12.3 million people in forced labor, bonded labor, forced child labor, and sexual servitude at any given time; other estimates range from 4 million to 27 million (Trafficking in Persons Report. Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, 2006).
  • Each year sexual traffickers lure, coerce, trick, drug, kidnap, and sell millions of vulnerable women and children into the multi-billion dollar sex trade. In their daily lives victims of sexual trafficking endure unspeakable acts of physical brutality, violence and degradation including rape by so-called customers and pimps; undergo forced abortions; acquire drug and alcohol dependencies; live in fear of their lives and in fear for the lives of their family and friends; suffer acute psychological reactions as a result of their extreme physical and emotional trauma; and contract sexually transmitted diseases which all too often bring life-long illness or hasten death. If they survive, the physical, psychological and spiritual impacts of these experiences on victims are devastating and enduring (Initiative Against Sexual Trafficking, Accessed October 31, 2007).
  • UNICEF reports that across the world, there are over one million children entering the sex trade every year and that approximately 30 million children have lost their childhood through sexual exploitation over the past 30 years (Commercial sexual exploitation position statement. UNICEF UK. 2004, January 28).
  • From fiscal year 2001 through fiscal year 2005, the Civil Rights Division and United States Attorney's Offices filed 91 trafficking cases, a 405% increase over the number of trafficking cases filed from fiscal years 1996 through 2000. In these cases, Department attorneys charged 248 trafficking defendants, a 210% increase over the previous five fiscal years. In addition, 140 defendants of trafficking related crimes were convicted, a 109% increase over the previous five years (U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division. 2006, February).
  • Foremost among the health risks of prostitution is premature death. In a recent US study of almost 2,000 prostitutes followed over a 30-year period, by far the most common causes of death were homicide, suicide, drug and alcohol related problems, HIV infection and accidents - in that order. The homicide rate among active female prostitutes was 17 times higher than that of the age-matched general population (Canadian Medical Association Journal. 2004, July 24).
  • Among children and teens living on the streets in the United States, involvement in commercial sex activity is a problem of epidemic proportion. Approximately 55% of street girls engage in formal prostitution (Department of Justice, Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section. Accessed October 31, 2007).
  • Studies indicate that child prostitutes serve between two and thirty clients per week, leading to a shocking estimated base of anywhere between 100 to 1500 clients per year, per child. Younger children, many below the age of 10, have been increasingly drawn into serving tourists (Department of Justice, Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section. Accessed October 31, 2007)
  • $19 Billion generated annually on the street from human trafficking (Christine Dolan, The Global Coalition to End Human Trafficking NOW).

PUBLIC OPINION

  • Eight out of ten Americans (81%) believe federal laws against Internet obscenity should be vigorously enforced, and seven out of ten (70%) believe that strongly. A higher percentage of women support vigorous enforcement of federal laws against Internet obscenity than men -- 90% versus 72% (Wirthlin Survey, 2002).
  • On the other hand, seven out of ten Americans (70%) say they do not believe these laws are currently being vigorously enforced (Wirthlin Survey, 2002).

MISCELLANEOUS

  • "A study conducted by Microsoft and RT Strategies Inc. http://www.rtstrategies.com found that while 74 percent of respondents believe they have the skills to protect themselves online, more than half (57 percent) are not sure they fully know enough to effectively protect their information" (Government, Technology and Advocacy Leaders Launch National Get Net Safe Tour Educate Consumers About Online Safety, May 16, 2006).
  • A seven-day nationwide fugitive roundup led by the USMS and hundreds of partners from other state, local, and federal agencies led to the arrest of 9,037 individuals .Among those arrested during Operation FALCON II were 1,102 violent sexual offenders, the largest number ever captured in a single law enforcement effort. Operation FALCON II was conducted from April 17-23, 2006" (Department of Justice, More Than 1,100 Sex Offender Arrests By U.S. Marshals' "Operation FALCON II" 27 April 2006).
  • According to Sex on TV 4, a Kaiser Family Foundation study (November, 2005), the number of television sexual scenes has almost doubled since 1998. 70% of all shows have some sexual content -- averaging 5 sexual scenes per hour compared to 56% and 3.2 scenes per hour respectively in 1998.
  • According to Sex on TV 4, a Kaiser Family Foundation study (November, 2005), among the top 20 most popular shows among teens, 70% include sexual content and almost half (45%) include sexual behavior.
  • An estimated 204.3 million people, or 74.9 percent of the U.S. population above the age of two and living in households equipped with a fixed-line phone, have Internet access (Nielson Media Research).
  • 57% of U.S. Internet users incorrectly believe that when a website has a privacy policy, it protects their personal information from being shared with other sites or companies (Annenberg Center).
  • Although no connection between legal porn viewing and criminal behavior has ever been proven, police have seen a steady increase in porn associated with crimes (Lt. Matt Bilodeau, spokesman for the Cache County Sheriff's Department, Associated Press, 10/17/04).
  • The adult-film industry is bigger than ever, making some 6,000 movies a year and grossing more than $4 billion - roughly as much as the National Football League (New York Post, Russell Scott Smith, 9/25/03).
  • Today, there are nearly 600,000 registered sex offenders in the United States; however, as many as 150,000 are 'lost' in the system having failed to comply with registration duties and remain undetected due to law enforcement's inability to track their whereabouts. (NCMEC, July 26, 2006)

E-Stop Law Purges Social Networking Sites of Sex Offenders - 12/1/2009

NEW YORK, NY (December 1, 2009) - Attorney General Andrew Cuomo today announced that more than 3,500 registered New York state sex offenders have been purged from social networking sites Facebook and MySpace in the first database sweep since the state's new Electronic Securing and Targeting of Online Predators Act (“e-STOP”) went into effect.

At the same time, many other social networking sites remain slow at adopting available new protections against sexual predators online, and Cuomo's office today sent letters urging them to take action now to similarly purge sex offenders from their sites.

Under the new e-STOP law, which was authored by Cuomo, Facebook was able to identify and disable accounts linked to 2,782 registered New York sex offenders, and MySpace was able to identify and disable accounts linked to 1,796 sex offenders.  Some registered sex offenders were linked to accounts on both sites, leaving a total of 3,533 individuals purged from Facebook and/or MySpace during the sweep.  New York State has more than 8,100 sex offenders who have registered e-mails with the state.  That means over 43% of those sex offenders have identified accounts linked to Facebook and/or MySpace.

Information about the accounts is now being shared with law enforcement authorities.  To date, Facebook and MySpace are the only social networking sites that have sought access to the state's new registry of sex offenders' Internet information made available through e-STOP.

Under e-STOP - the nation's most comprehensive law to enhance protections from sexual predators on the Internet - many sexual predators are banned outright from using social networking sites on the Internet while on probation or parole.  Also, convicted sex offenders must register all of their e-mail addresses, screen names, and other Internet identifiers with the state.  That information is then made available to social networking sites so they can purge potential predators from their online worlds.

“We created e-STOP to help put an end to sexual predators using the Internet as a tool to prey on the innocent,” said Attorney General Cuomo.  “Facebook and MySpace are successfully using e-STOP to help make the Internet safer, and it's time for all social networking sites to do their part to keep others from being senselessly victimized.”

WFC releases study on efects of internet pornography

December 2,2009

Wisconsin Family Council (WFC) and Family Research Council released a new study today that comprehensively details the effects of pornography on marriages, children, communities and individual happiness.

The study, “The Effects of Pornography on Individuals, Marriage, Family and Community,” synthesizes all available research on the effects of pornography on families and communities.

Pornography distorts an individual's concept of the nature of conjugal relations, which, in turn, alters both sexual attitudes and behavior. It is a major threat to marriage, to family, to children and to individual happiness. In undermining marriage, it is one of the major factors in undermining social stability.

Social scientists, clinical psychologists, and biologists have begun to clarify some of the social and psychological effects, and neurologists are beginning to delineate the biological mechanisms through which pornography produces its powerful negative effects. Among the study's findings:

  • Men who view pornography regularly have a higher tolerance for abnormal sexuality, including rape, sexual aggression, and sexual promiscuity.
  • Married men who are involved in pornography feel less satisfied with their conjugal relations and less emotionally attached to their wives. Wives notice and are upset by the difference.
  • Pornography engenders greater sexual permissiveness, which in turn leads to a greater risk of out-of-wedlock births and STDs, which in turn lead to still more weaknesses and debilities.
  • The presence of sexually oriented businesses significantly harms the surrounding community, leading to increases in crime and decreases in property values.
  • Child-sex offenders are more likely to view pornography regularly or to be involved in its distribution.
  • Pornography eliminates the warmth of affectionate family life, which is the natural social nutrient for the growing child.

“Pornography addiction destroys the life of the addict, wreaks havoc on marriages, degrades women and children, destroys relationships with family, friends, and acquaintances, ruins livelihoods and destroys the intimacy designed for marriage. We know thousands of Wisconsin marriages and families have been ruined by this insidious industry. The Wisconsin Department of Justice's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Unit alone reports almost 200 arrests involving Internet child pornography in an 18-month period. This is just one aspect of the pornography business in our state. There are no winners in this pernicious industry,” said Julaine Appling, President of Wisconsin Family Council.

 

 

Mid-Missouri Internet crimes unit faces many challenges

 

Tuesday, December 8, 2009 | 12:03 p.m. CST

 

Detective Andy Anderson explains how each monitor on his desk is tied to a different computer and how he uses each computer for a different task such as chatting with someone or for forensic examination. Detective Anderson is the coordinator for the Mid-Missouri Internet Crimes Task Force and a 23-year veteran of the Boone County Sheriff's Department. ¦ Calin Ilea

 

BY Tram Whitehurst

 

COLUMBIA — The door to the office is closed. A sign next to it reads, "Evidence being processed. Please knock before entering."

 

The warning is meant to keep visitors from stumbling across things they'd never want to see. Inside, detectives with the Mid-Missouri Internet Crimes Task Force are sorting through images of child pornography.

 

From 2007 to 2008, Internet crime investigations increased 11 percent. With more than 1,200 hours of training from 2007 to 2009, Mid-Missouri Internet Crimes Task Force members are working to keep up with the rise in Internet crime. Hard drives of different capacities stand on a shelf at the Mid-Missouri Internet Crimes Task Force. The hard drives are used to copy and back up data in the investigations of the task force.

 

Detective Mark Sullivan (left), Detective Tracy Perkins and Detective Andy Anderson are investigators for the Mid-Missouri Internet Crimes Task Force. The task force investigates child pornography possession and enticement cases. The three detectives pose for a portrait at the Mid-Missouri Internet Crimes Task Force office in Columbia .

 

Detective Mark Sullivan takes notes while working on a case for for the Mid-Missouri Internet Crimes Task Force in Columbia . "You think you've seen just about everything, then you see something new and you wonder, how can someone do that to a child?" Sullivan said.

 

Looking at such images is just one part of their job. The task force conducts criminal investigations and provides forensic assistance to law enforcement agencies across a seven-county region. Its detectives focus mostly on crimes against children, including possession of child pornography and enticement.

 

Since it was formed in 2007, the task force has conducted hundreds of investigations, leading to dozens of convictions and to the identification of 24 child victims.

But the detectives acknowledge they're only reaching the tip of the iceberg. Theirs is a daily struggle to keep up with a flood of material online and not to lose themselves in a world in which children are constantly victimized.

 

‘There is no typical day'

 

The four members of the task force — each of whom comes from a local law enforcement agency — spend hours in front of their computers each day, looking for leads, writing warrants, chatting with possible pedophiles and viewing photos and videos of children being brutalized.

 

"There is no typical day," said Detective Andy Anderson, the task force coordinator. Anderson is the veteran of the group, a member of the Boone County Sheriff's Department who has worked on crimes against children for 20 years. Five computer monitors sit on his desks, clear indications of the nature of his work.

 

Because the unit is so small, each of the detectives contributes to the investigations in any way they can. But they also have their specialties.

 

Detective Tracy Perkins, for example, spends much of her time playing the online role of a 14-year-old girl. Within minutes of entering public chat rooms on AOL, Yahoo or MSN, she's inundated with messages from older men. On some nights, so many people want to chat that Perkins has to sign off.

 

She's not alone. About one in seven youth online receive a sexual solicitation or approach over the Internet, according to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children .

 

"how are you tonight?" a 37-year-old married man asks Perkins in one conversation.

 

"k u," Perkins responds in character. She uses two monitors to keep track of her conversations.

 

"pretty good. where in MO are you?"

 

" columbia ," Perkins responds. She has a feeling what's coming next.

 

"how old are you?" the man asks. Perkins says most people try to find out her age right away.

 

"14"

 

"cool," the man says.

 

In more than eight hours of conversation over the next two weeks, the man compliments the girl on her looks and intelligence, tries to find out if she will report him and sets up a time and place to meet — all part of what investigators call "grooming" the victim.

 

The man is arrested when he shows up at the Columbia address Perkins provided. He is what detectives refer to as a "traveler," a suspect who attempts to meet a child in person.

 

Overwhelming evidence

 

The same factors that make child pornography so easy to access over the Internet also make prosecuting the cases relatively straightforward. For every conversation conducted or image downloaded, there's an electronic record — often significant in size — that detectives can find.

 

"Typically, the evidence in these cases is pretty clear and overwhelming," said Boone County Assistant Prosecutor Merilee Crockett, who works closely with the task force.

 

The life cycle of child pornography cases varies. They can be proactive or reactive and take weeks or months to complete, depending on the complexity of the case. A man sentenced in August to eight years in prison, for example, possessed more than 6,000 pictures and 300 videos of child pornography. Detectives had to sort through all of it.

 

The task force can determine if an individual possesses child pornography by monitoring file-sharing networks, such as LimeWire, where people trade in illicit images as if they were songs or TV shows. Once detectives determine that a particular network address is being used to download or share child pornography, they get a warrant and seize computers and other devices.

 

At that point detectives forensically examine the digital files — whether they're on computers, external hard drives, cell phones, CDs or DVDs — and determine the extent of the crime. If the case goes to trial, detectives must view every picture and video the defendant possessed to select the handful that will be shown to the jury.

 

"It can be disgusting," Anderson said. "Listening to kids talk about it after the fact is nothing like watching them on videos and hearing them scream."

 

Images are eventually sent to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, which maintains a database of sexually abusive images and tries to match and identify victims. The database has information on more than 2,400 child victims, but fewer than 10 percent are ever identified, which is the first step in locating the children.

 

"We're not doing a good job identifying victims," said Rodney Jones, chief of the State Technical Assistance Team of the Missouri Department of Social Services. His unit also conducts investigations into crimes against children over the Internet.

 

‘It's a dark world out there'

 

The arrests and convictions provide momentary relief for the detectives, who otherwise spend their time confronting issues others would rather avoid.

 

"Most people haven't given a lot of thought to what child porn really is," Crockett said. "It is probably the most horrible thing anybody can do to a child, and they spend all day working on it. I really admire them for that."

 

The detectives admit there are certain cases that stick with them, even years later. For Anderson , it's a case in which a man molested a 4-year-old girl whom his mother was babysitting. Perkins recalls a man she talked to online who thought she was a parent and wanted to pay her to use her daughter for sex acts.

 

"It's a dark world out there," said Perkins, who has worked in law enforcement for 16 years.

 

The world of sex crimes against children has a language all its own. Users enter terms such as "pedo" for pedophile, and "PTHC" for preteen hardcore, when searching for or labeling images. Search terms as innocuous as "Helen" can lead users to a series of pictures and videos of a particular child who has become so popular online that users know to search for her by name.

 

"You think you've seen just about everything, then you see something new and you wonder, 'How can someone do that to a child?''' Detective Mark Sullivan said. "This one I saw a week ago, I think about it every once in a while when I'm back at (home)."

 

Adding to the stress of the job is the fact that the detectives all have children of their own. Photos cover the walls, desks and computer monitors in the office, the children's smiling faces offering a stark contrast to the images normally on view.

 

The detectives try to keep the two worlds separate as much as possible, dealing with the divide in their own ways.

 

"I can't take it home with me, and I don't take it home with me," Perkins said. Her young children don't know the details of what she does for a living.

 

But the detectives acknowledge that their work does influence how they view the world and their children's place in it.

 

"I know there are individuals out there that harm kids," said Sullivan, who has a 10-year-old and 17-year-old. "I don't think I'm paranoid or hanging over them, but I do have that level of awareness of who can do these crimes." At his house, the family computer is in the living room.

 

The longer the detectives work on the cases, the more they find themselves trying to get inside the heads of the perpetrators. It's a challenge they can't — and don't necessarily want — to master.

 

The typical offender the task force encounters is a white man in his 30s or 40s. The detectives also have started to see younger offenders in their 20s and even teens. They've investigated five juvenile cases this year alone.

 

Most offenders do not have a significant criminal record before showing up on the task force's radar. The detectives could not think of a single enticement case in which the suspect had a criminal record, and in only a few possession investigations was there a criminal history. Many suspects were well-educated and had good jobs.

 

"People say 'they seemed like such nice people,'" Anderson said. "That's what's so scary about it. They can be extremely dangerous."

 

Black humor

 

Despite the depressing nature of the job, or perhaps because of it, the mood in the office is light and the humor often off-color.

 

"You can do a serious job and still have some fun," Perkins said. "You have to."

 

The detectives joke around with one another throughout the day, the bonds between them forged in their shared hardship and the physical closeness in which they work.

 

Their small, windowless, two-room office is in the attic of a nondescript county building south of town off U.S. 63. It makes it hard for the detectives to avoid hearing, and chiming in on, other conversations.

 

During one discussion about humor in the office, Anderson interrupted and said, "Even surgeons cut up once in a while," at which point both he and Sullivan broke out in laughter.

 

"Don't forget to tip your waitress," Sullivan said in response.

 

At other times the detectives strike a world-weary posture that would be familiar to law enforcement officials in any time or place.

 

The detectives refer to suspects as "knuckleheads" and make fun of the stories they come up with to explain why they were trying to meet a 14-year-old or download child pornography. And instead of the "easy" button present in many offices, the task force has a "bull—" button that has seen its fair share of use.

 

A constant struggle

 

Technological advances only make the detectives' job more difficult. Although child pornography is not a new phenomenon, the Internet has led to explosive growth; Anderson started working on Internet-related cases just 10 years ago.

 

Peer-to-peer networks make finding and sharing child pornography as easy as the click of a mouse, and cheap storage means people can collect more of it.

 

"There is such a craving for this material," Jones said. "And all people have to do now is turn on their computer and it's done."

 

The newest challenges for detectives are social networking sites such as Facebook and Flickr, where users post family photos often without a second thought. If the images are not made private, they can be accessed by almost anybody.

 

"Once you put a photo on the Internet you can't take it back,” Jones said. “You have to be cautious about what you post online."

 

A lot of the material the detectives come across originates in Russia and Eastern Europe . That's why U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is one of the agencies with which the task force works closely. It also partners with federal prosecutors, the FBI and seven other regional task forces in Missouri .

 

Yet for all the agencies working on the problem, the detectives say there's much more that could be done.

 

"Child porn is way out of hand," Anderson said. "We could do so much more if we had the resources, but we can't. It's frustrating."

 

The task force is funded by a combination of grants and contributions from local law enforcement agencies. In July, Gov. Jay Nixon allocated about $195,000 to help pay for detectives' salaries and additional training.

 

But earlier this fall the task force lost a full-time detective when the Columbia Police Department pulled Mike Lederle from the office for budget reasons. Lederle specialized in forensic examinations, and his departure will be a big loss for the unit, the detectives said.

 

"Sometimes you can catch fish a lot faster than you can clean ‘em up," Sullivan said. That means the task force can identify suspects, but they need the special skills of forensic examiners to analyze computers and other electronic evidence. Capt. Scott Richardson of the MU Police Department conducts forensic examinations part-time for the unit.

 

Although the detectives realize they will never fully put a stop to the flow of material over the Internet, they take solace in the fact that they are making a difference in their small corner of the world.

 

"It's real rewarding to be able to stop this activity," Anderson said. "For every person we locate and identify, that's one less person committing crimes against kids."

 

http://www.columbiamissourian.com/stories/2009/12/08/internet-crimes-unit-faces-many-challenges/

Send this internet filtering site to a friend

 

 

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-Dartmouth helps fight child pornography

By Mark Davis
Valley News of Lebanon
Published: Saturday, December 19, 2009
HANOVER — A Dartmouth College researcher has helped develop a computer program that could remove large amounts of child pornography from the Internet.

In collaboration with Microsoft Corp., Dartmouth computer scientist and digital forensics expert Hany Farid developed PhotoDNA, software that extracts the underlying signature of digital pornographic images and allows Internet providers to track down the images.

The team recently donated PhotoDNA to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the national clearinghouse for images of child pornography, and to all Internet service providers, to allow Internet companies for first time to sift through billions of digital images to detect which are the most offensive and commonly redistributed images of child sexual abuse.

Developers say it is a promising tool to combat a massive problem.

The Center for Missing and Exploited Children reviewed nearly 30 million photos and videos of child pornography since 2003, and currently reviews 250,000 images a week, officials said.

While officials said the software will be made available to law enforcement agencies, for now, Farid said, the goal is not to track down users of child pornography, but to remove as many images from the Internet as possible.

“You can't arrest your way out of the problem,” said Farid, who specializes in using math and computer tools to determine whether digital media are authentic. “Child pornography — it's too big.”

Every digital image has its own identifying traits, like a human's DNA. With PhotoDNA, the Center for Missing and Exploited Children will extract the signatures of a few thousand of the most disturbing images obtained from convicted pedophiles. These images often are copied widely across the Internet. The signatures, and the PhotoDNA software, will then be made available to all Internet service providers, which can use them look for scan millions of images on the Internet. When they detect a signature that matches one stored in the Center for Missing and Exploited Children database, the service providers can remove it from circulation.

PhotoDNA incorporates no major technological breakthroughs, but was made by possible by two key tweaks to existing technology.

In the past, once a digital image was altered in any small way — users could crop it, change color or add text — it would change its signature, making the images virtually impossible to detect.

PhotoDNA essentially extends the signature of a digital image, to make sure that small changes cannot conceal its underlying identity.

The second advance allowed developers to overcome a more fundamental problem — how to sort through billions of images quickly, without paralyzing Internet service providers.

PhotoDNA, by storing only a few thousand images for comparison, will be able to act quickly; the software can analyze an image's signature in 5 milliseconds, Farid said.

It also must be able to distinguish an image of child pornography from a benign image, like, for example, a family picture of a baby in a bathtub.

Farid said PhotoDNA is close to foolproof and registers a “false alarm,” on only one out of every billion images.

Internet service providers are expected to begin implementing PhotoDNA in the coming months. By law, Internet service providers must notify the Center for Missing and Exploited Children when it believes a child pornography image comes through its network.

While Farid said the immediate goal is to remove images from the Internet, the technology behind PhotoDNA could be used by law enforcement to target distributors of child pornography. For instance, Internet service providers already monitor e-mail for spam and viruses, and could use PhotoDNA to track child pornography transmitted via e-mail.

“Those are policy decisions that have to be made,” Farid said.

Farid has a longstanding relationship with Microsoft, which helps fund his Dartmouth lab.

Farid recently made news by declaring that the well-known image of Lee Harvey Oswald holding a rifle in his backyard was indeed authentic. Oswald had claimed the photo, which depicts him holding a rifle in one hand and a Marxist newspapers in the other, had been doctored, and observers over the years noted what appeared to be inconsistent lighting and shadows.

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Two emergency workers fired in porn- could you be next?


By Wayne Laepple
The Daily Item

SUNBURY — Viewing pornography on county computers has not been confined to the Northumberland County sheriff's department, officials said Wednesday. Two Northumberland County 911 center employees have been fired for looking at pornographic materials on their work computers, The Daily Item learned Wednesday.

Joe Picarella, county human resources director, confirmed the employment of the two was terminated. He would not reveal their names.

County Commissioner Vinny Clausi, who Tuesday leveled accusations that sheriff's deputies had viewed Internet pornography on their office computers, confirmed the firings, but also declined to identify the employees or their positions.

Asked whether he knew of others who could face discipline for similar actions, Clausi replied, "No comment."

Clausi said received more than 100 phone calls Wednesday from residents who were "outraged and upset" over the allegations centered on the sheriff's department.

"This must be resolved," Clausi said. "It's a concern beyond the pornography. How can (Sheriff Chad Reiner) secure the courthouse and protect the judges and the court systems when he can't even secure his own office?"

Clausi raised the issue of porn-viewing in the sheriff's office while balking over Reiner's request for a $30,000 increase in his budget.

Contacted Tuesday about the concerns, Reiner said county officials could not prove who was viewing the pornographic Web sites because his deputies would often leave their computers logged on while away from their desks. In light of the concerns, the sheriff said he has ordered his staff to cease all use of the Internet while on the job.

http://www.dailyitem.com/0100_news/local_story_364225900.html

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If You Must Know
What Happens in Sex Rehab?
By Caitlin Duke Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2010


The entrance to the compound of the Gentle Path facility in Hattiesburg, Miss., where Tiger Woods is allegedly receiving treatment

Rogelio V. Solis / AP


The calls for Tiger Woods to get help did not go unheeded: on Jan. 16, after weeks of sordid allegations regarding his extramarital affairs, Radaronline.com reported that Woods had enrolled in the Gentle Path program at Pine Grove Behavioral Health and Addiction Services, in Hattiesburg, Miss., to be treated for sex addiction. Local television stations later confirmed the story.

Few people know what actually happens at sex rehab. While those who treat it say sex addiction is a disease like any other compulsion, the field is in its infancy: there is virtually no research on it compared to the vast resources on drug or alcohol addiction. "You look at ways that your behavior has made your life unmanageable. That's really the question," says Benoit Denizet-Lewis, author of America Anonymous: Eight Addicts in Search of a Life, who has been treated for sex addiction himself. "That often differentiates a sex addict from a nonsex addict."

Sex addiction is marked not simply poor decision-making in the face of temptation, but by a sense of powerlessness before one's own compulsive sexual behavior. There are many different types of sex addicts, including so-called sexual anorexics who avoid physical intimacy with their partners and seek it out in fantasies or with others. Despite the shortage of statistics, researchers agree that the vast majority — over 90% — of sex addicts are men. Rob Weiss, the founder and executive director of the Sexual Recovery Institute in southern California, estimates that up to 5% of Americans deal with some form of sex addiction, though he says that there is no real way to know.
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Rehab length varies from two-week-long outpatient seminars to inpatient clinics that keep patients for up to six weeks, such as the one where Woods is staying. Treatment — to address both the addiction and its underlying causes — involves a mix of one-on-one sessions, group therapy and family counseling, with addicts and their partners encouraged to also participate in supplemental 12-step programs.

The first step in treatment of a sexual addiction is a full evaluation of a patient's history and any past trauma. "All the men I've worked with — and I've worked with thousands of them over the years — have some profound experience of abuse and/or neglect in childhood," says Weiss. Without addressing the underlying sexual, physical or emotional trauma that usually leads to addiction, there is little hope of ending it.

The second stage of treatment involves confronting patients' distorted view of reality. Did the addict really believe that paying for a sensual massage was not the same thing as hiring a prostitute? Or that he could spend most of the day surfing the Internet for pornography and that no one would find out? These questions are not meant to shame a patient, but to force him to understand what really happened. As Weiss puts it, "We may not stop the behavior, but we're going to ruin it for you."
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The last stage of treatment is relapse prevention. Therapists and patients discuss triggers for addictive behavior — unstructured time alone, for example — and identify ways to avoid them. Brian McGinness, a senior cost estimator at a Michigan commercial construction manufacturer, spent the first nine years of his marriage addicted to pornography. His treatment was supervised by members of his church, an antipornography ministry group called XXXchurch, and a neighborhood friend, who acted as "accountability partners," monitoring his Internet usage after he decided to get sober. (Sex addiction shares the use of the word "sobriety," with other forms of addiction, though definition varies based on an individually determined level of acceptable sexual behavior.) With the monitors' help, which he no longer needs on regular basis, McGinness has not looked at pornography for the past four years.
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A patient's partner also plays an integral role in his or her treatment. Elin Nordegen, Woods' wife, has already visited him at Pine Grove. "Recovery is a three-legged stool for a couple — his recovery, her recovery and healing, and then the marriage recovery," says Dr. Douglas Weiss (no relation to Rob Weiss), executive director of the Heart to Heart Counseling Center in Colorado, who describes himself as being sober from his own sex addiction for over 20 years. Addicts are encouraged to disclose the full range of their behaviors to their partners when confronting their distortions of reality in the second stage of treatment. If an addict happens to contract an STD and never tells his wife, "his behavior could kill her," Douglas Weiss notes.

Athough Woods may have only signed in for a six-week program, his therapy is likely to be ongoing. Indeed, at Heart to Heart, clients are encouraged to come back for annual polygraphs to test sobriety. According to Maureen Canning, a clinical consultant at the Meadows Addiction Treatment Center in Arizona, simply working through the addiction itself could take two to five years of therapy, enhanced by 12-step programs for both partners; working through related trauma might take the rest of a lifetime. "Sex addiction is not about remaining abstinent for the rest of your life," says Denizet-Lewis. "It is about learning to have sex in a way that makes you happy again."



Read more: http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1956517,00.html#ixzz0ditEog7v

 

 

 

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