New iPhone app in US targets child predators (Update)

Sep 12, 2013
The US Department of Homeland Security enlisted smartphone users in its fight against child pornography with an iPhone app intended to make it easy to report suspected child predators.

The US Department of Homeland Security enlisted smartphone users in its fight against child pornography Thursday with an iPhone app intended to make it easier to report suspected child predators.

The "Operation Predator" app lets informants submit information via email or a telephone tip line, and also includes a run-down of the nation's most-wanted alleged child sex offenders.

It is free to download via iTunes, albeit with a warning that it is not for persons under the age of 17, presumably the group most vulnerable to child sex crimes.

"When children are being sexually abused and exploited, it's a race against the clock to rescue the child and bring the predator to justice," said John Sandweg, acting director of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the Homeland Security unit behind the app.

"These investigations are one of our highest priorities and, in today's world, we need to be technologically savvy and innovative in our approach," he said.

Topping the app's list of nine fugitive suspects was one "John Doe," an unnamed white male aged 45 to 55, "wanted for production of child pornography," who could be living "anywhere in the world."

ICE said the unidentified man appears in glasses and a beard in video files seen by ICE agents in Los Angeles earlier this year sexually abusing a girl aged between 10 and 12 in a wood-panelled room.

Other suspects—all wanted for making, distributing or owning child pornography—include a 35-year-old Indian national who allegedly helped run an Internet bulletin board for child-porn purveyors.

ICE said its app would be available for non-Apple devices "in the near future."

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) offers a Child ID app for iPhone and Android devices that enables parents to report missing youngsters.

There is no official app with the FBI's well-known lists of most-wanted criminals and terrorists, but private app developers have come out with their own versions, including one that also includes a catalog of missing children.

Explore further: Fans hop aboard exclusive train to Comic-Con

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

International operation nabs 245 child porn suspects

Jan 03, 2013

An international police operation into child pornography led to the arrest of 245 people and the rescues of 123 children, mostly in the US, the US immigration enforcement agency announced Thursday.

New Zealand smashes global child pornography ring

May 22, 2012

A global network that used social networking sites such as Facebook to distribute child pornography has been smashed after a tip-off from New Zealand authorities, officials said Tuesday.

British PM urges Google to boost fight against child porn

Jun 09, 2013

British Prime Minister David Cameron on Saturday demanded that Google and other search engines do more to rid the Internet of child pornography, warning that lives were being put at risk through the "disgusting" ...

Recommended for you

Google worker shows early-draft glimpse of Chrome OS

Jul 20, 2014

The Chrome OS is in for a future look. Athena, a Chromium OS project, will bring forth the new Chrome OS user experience. Google's François Beaufort on Friday, referring to the screenshot he posted, said," ...

Google eyes Chrome on Windows laptop battery drain

Jul 19, 2014

Google Chrome on Microsoft Windows has been said to have a problem for some time but this week comes news that Google will give it the attention others think the problem quite deserves. Namely, Google is to ...

User comments : 0