Saturday, August 1, 2009

New Software to Battle Child Porn on the Web

Householders and computer users will now have another weapon to limit the spread illegal child pornography sites on the internet.

Ecpat Child Alert, an anti child prostitution and pornography organisation, has developed new software that lets users report suspected illegal sites to the authorities, with just a click of the mouse.

Millions of images of shocking and graphic child sex abuse are spread by the internet to users everyday.

Alan Bell, Ecpat director, says the images of real children.

"Every time those images are viewed by different people the abuse happens all over again," says Bell.

He says while people think such images are highly unlikely to enter their computers at home, they are very mistaken.

"There'd be tens of thousands of clicks not people but clicks every day here in New Zealand trying to access illegal child sex abuse images. It's a startling figure," says Bell.

Now internet users in New Zealand can do something about it thanks to new software that is both free and simple to use.

Once installed, if a user gets a pop up or visit a site they suspect contains child pornography, a click on the child alert icon will send details of the site to Ecpat Child Alert and they in turn will send it through to the Department of Internal Affairs.

"If it does contain illegal child sex images, they can block access to it so nobody else can see that particular site," says Bell.

And the whole process is completely anonymous and nothing is traced back to the user.

Minister of Internal Affairs Nathan Guy says there is no silver bullet in fighting child porn.

He says parents' needs to keep an eye on their children's use of the internet and be ever vigilant.

In the first half of this year, more than 25 people have been convicted for watching, storing or distributing child pornography in New Zealand.

Bell says child pornography is very much an issue in New Zealand and that is why the company opened up the hotline.

Free software will be available at all body shops and on the child alert website from next week.

Eddie Richardson Charged with Having Sex with Child

A Wake County faces charges of having sex with a child and molesting two others.

Police said Eddie Richardson, 55, performed sex acts on three different children between the ages of 7 and 12-years-old.

Police said the offenses happened over a span of several years dating back to 2001.

Richardson was arrested on Friday and was being held Saturday afternoon under a $825,000 bond.

Pastor Bernard Squires Facing Child Porn Charges

A federal magistrate has ordered that a northern Indiana church pastor facing child pornography possession charges be kept in custody until his trial.

Prosecutors said that 64-year-old Bernard Squires of rural Columbia City had at least 10,000 pornographic images of children and 5,000 videos depicting child pornography on a computer hard drive.

Squires is the pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Columbia City. He was arrested last week as part of an FBI investigation into child pornography distribution over the Internet.

His wife and five other pastors testified Thursday in support of his release from custody, citing his volunteer work as a Whitley County Sheriff’s Department chaplain and at the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Fort Wayne.

The judge, however, ruled that Squires was a flight risk.

Matthew Allen Steward Sentenced to 5 Years for Child Porn

A Morganfield, Kentucky man is sentenced to five years and ten months in federal prison after pleading guilty to receiving and possessing child pornography.

Prosecutors say 23-year-old Matthew Allen Steward had dozens of images and videos of child pornography on his home computer and on compact discs.

Authorities say the images depicted children as young as five years old being sexually abused by adults.