Originally posted by Mahamas Earth on 09/13/2012

Human Trafficking!

With more than one billion internet users around the world, the internet has become an integral part of our daily lives. As New York Times columnist Tom Friedman wrote in his best selling book The World is Flat, the internet has leveled the playing field, creating a convergence of people, places, knowledge and information. As individuals, we have good global. However, there is a dark side to this globalization.

Criminals are readily making use of the internet, to carry out activities, ranging from computer intrusions to money laundering. Terrorists around the world are recruiting, training, and planning attacks, armed only with laptops. One of the most insidious uses of the internet is for Child ” Sexual ” exploitation. According to the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), an Organization that works internationally to remove child Sexual abuse images from the internet, graphic images of child abuse are growing significantly in number on the web. The latest report published by the IWF, claims that the percentage of abusive websites had increased almost 28 percent in 2009. On these reported websites, 73 percent of the persons subjected to abuse appeared to be under age of 10 years.
Approximately 65 percent of the images and videos depicted sexual activity between adults and children, including rape and sexual torture of the children. In total, 715 unique sources of commercial child sexual abuse websites were identified. Each of the webpages or websites is a gateway to hundreds, or even thousands, of images or videos of children being sexually abused. These websites are, unfortunately, supported by layers of payment mechanisms, content stores, membership systems and advertising frames. Payment systems may involve Prepay cards, credit cards, ‘virtual money’ or e-payment systems, with transactions being carried out via secure webpages or e-mails. Case after case, we see adult predators taking advantage of the weakest among us, the proliferation of mobile phone and multimedia messages add another twist to the story. Recently, The Concise Oxford English Dictionary introduced several new words in its latest edition of dictionaries. Among these is the term ‘Sexting’ which is defined as the act of sending Sexually-Explicit text messages or pictures of individuals ( including minors ) via a mobile phone.
These messages and pictures are generally passed from mobile phone to mobile phone until they end up being uploaded on (and downloaded from) the internet. After this, these posts are extensively redistributed online, which makes stopping them or removing them from the internet, virtually impossible.
Modern technology has given users unprecedented ease and ability to become photographers and publishers. Unfortunately, having access to technologies and tools, and using them responsibly are two very diverse concepts.

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