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Google, Facebook And Twitter Fight Child Porn

The British-based group The Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) has announced yesterday that Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and Yahoo have all consented to utilize a system to both identify and block child pornography. According to an official statement, the new system is based on what some call “a digital fingerprint” or “hashes” which are created by scanning content through a specific computer algorithm which in turn assigns an individual code number for each item and classifies certain items as “abusive”.

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Child pornography/Image: GridMK

Pictures can be identified and even removed from the internet faster. Sharing can be curtailed of not even immediately blocked. New pictures can be prevented from even being uploaded.

The foundation is using three different technologies to create the hashes. They are known as Microsoft’s PhotoDNA, SHA-1 and MD5. IWF also stated that it will share the Hash list with internet giants such as Google, Facebook and Twitter that permit the uploading, storing and searching of images.

The sharing of the file hashes will facilitate the locating and deleting of child pornography from their services. This will further prevent the uploading and sharing of the illegal images.

They told the press: “Thanks to funding from internet companies, the IWF, the Internet Watch Foundation, is now not just taking reports of child abuse images, but proactively getting out there and looking for them”.

Susie Hargreaves, chief executive of the IWF stated that this new system could be a game-changer and really steps up the fight against child sexual abuse images online. It means victims’ images can be identified and removed more quickly, and we can prevent known child sexual abuse images from being uploaded to the Internet in the first place.”

Critics note, however, that Google and Facebook both have questionable records of success in terms of properly explaining let alone enforcing the rules. Online security experts conclude that child pornography in both picture and video form will continue to be posted on the internet using “darknet” which search engines such as Google cannot even access.

Google, Facebook And Twitter Fight Child Porn

About Will Phoenix

W. Scott Phoenix, B.A., B.S. was born in Hawaii, raised in Pennsylvania and resides in California. He has been a published writer since 1978. His work has appeared (under various names) in numerous places in print and online including Examiner.com. He is a single parent of three children and has also worked as an actor, singer and teacher. He has been employed by such publications as the Daily Collegian and the Los Angeles Times.