By the mid-1980's, the trafficking of child pornography within the United States had been almost completely stamped out through a series of successful law enforcement campaigns. Child pornographers had become lonely and hunted individuals. Producing child abuse images was both difficult and expensive, reproducing them was equally difficult and expensive, and purchasing and trading such images was extremely risky. Anonymous distribution and receipt was not possible and it was difficult for pedophiles to find and interact with each other. Sadly, technology has changed the playing field.
Producing child abuse images has now become easy and inexpensive. The internet allows images and movies to be reproduced and distributed to many thousands of individuals at a time with the click of a button, and the distribution and receipt of such images can be done almost anonymously. As a result, child pornography is readily available through virtually every Internet technology (web sites, email, instant messaging/ICQ, Internet Relay Chat (IRC), newsgroups/bulletin boards, and peer-to-peer). The technological ease, lack of expense, and anonymity in obtaining and distributing child pornography has resulted in an explosion in the availability, accessibility, and volume of such material.
CEOS works with the 93 United States Attorney offices around the country and investigative agencies to actively combat this growing problem. By maintaining a co-ordinated, national-level law enforcement focus, including co-ordinating nationwide and international investigations and prosecutions, CEOS works to deter the production, distribution and possession of child pornography by aggressively investigating and prosecuting these kinds of crimes. CEOS also works with law enforcement to identify victims used to produce child pornography with the goal of rescuing the victims and preventing continued abuse of these children.
To report an incident involving the possession, distribution, receipt, or production of child pornography, go to the website www.cybertipline.com operated by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). Your report will be forwarded to a law enforcement agency for investigation and action.
For information on how to scan and erase history on your computer, click here.