Fighting Internet Child Abuse
The Dutch children’s rights organization Terre des Hommes in close co-operation with international specialists will develop advanced software to tackle online sexual abuse of children.
Image: Terre des Hommes
So called ‘chat bots’ will monitor, trace, identify and deter millions of perpetrators worldwide.
Every day approximately 750,000 men search online sex with minors. By creating a fictional, virtual, 10-year-old Filipino girl named Sweetie, Terre des Hommes has already unmasked more than a thousand of these felons in more than seventy countries. The details of the men were handed over to Interpol. In 2014 in Australia the first offender was convicted, based on his requests to Sweetie to perform sex acts in front of a webcam.
With the Sweetie project Terre des Hommes highlighted the scale and nature of the abuse and demonstrated that a proactive approach is effective in preventing these crimes. However, millions of potential offenders still consider themselves unobserved, anonymous and immune for prosecution.
It is still too easy to engage children in sexual activities on the internet. So now Terre des Hommes undertakes a next step with the Sweetie 2.0 project - sponsored by the Dutch Postcode Lottery with a 3.8 million-euro donation.
Sweetie 2.0 will have a broader approach. Looking for abusers, digital fake children (avatars) and undercover ‘chat bots’ will enter thousands of chat rooms. Amongst the specialist accompanying the project are criminologists and psychologists from the Tilburg University, who will advise and analyse the results.
Sustainable Urban Delta
The inherent complexities and pressures associated with densely populated urban areas are second nature to the Dutch. Over many centuries, authorities, industries, knowledge institutes, and citizens have striven to develop integrated approaches and a holistic vision to enable sustainable development of the urban environment – the Sustainable Urban Delta.