NetClean, a Sweden based company uses image recognition in a new manner to tackle a difficult problem – child pornography. The company has a new approach to the problem and instead of using traditional image recognition, which has its problems, it has partnered with local law enforcing agencies and organisations to fight the problem.
NetClean Technologies is the forerunner at developing methods to curb the spread of child abuse and sexual content. The firm works in cooperation with law enforcing agencies and numerous child protection agencies which include World Childhood Foundation and Internet Watch Foundation.
NetClean offers an innovative approach that would match any image to the existing database of any child porn sites irrespective of the source of their location.
NetClean isn’t the first company to tackle this, there are numerous solutions on the market. The challenge with previous methods has been the difficulty with blocking such sites, differentiating between the content and worst still having a firm hold on to the peer to peer networks.
With NetClean, the approach is two tier and works in strict collaboration with the law enforcing agencies. It utilizes the police database, analyses the images and creates hash tags for each. The same is then implemented at any clients’ computer keeping an eye on any image that is viewed on the computer, irrespective of where it is coming from. If it matches the image found in the database, an alert is then sent to the company, which then decides what action to take.
According to a report at WSJ, the method has been quite successful with over 400,000 licenses being sold off. I guess the method of this sort needs to be in place across all computers, given the fact that at least 0.5% of internet users will access child abuse images and one out of three will end up being an abuser. Hopefully with more secure systems curbing such heinous activity the number might come down lower.