Everyone knows that the Internet is rampant with Pedophiles, Child Molesters and Predators.
They stalk children & women online, exchange inappropriate textual messages, photos & other media.
The scale of this issue is massive, so massive that unfortunately Law Enforcement is hardly able to keep up. Added to that is the issue of Law Enforcement turning a blind eye or even aiding and abetting these heinous acts. While it’s difficult for common people to take action in such cases, we are well equipped to tackle this, head on, online.
We must also understand one thing.
Most of the pedophiles are themselves abused at some point in their life. There is a direct causal relationship between getting abused at an young age and becoming an abuser later on. Most abusers have several victims and every victim we save lowers the number of future pedophiles. (This is harsh but it is the unfortunate truth).
This article is split into two parts, the first is a brief overview of how to actively search & track Pedophiles on Social Media. The next part deals with what you should do when you actually find them.
There are several ways of searching for Pedophiles. You can search on Social media, find suspicious people, groups, pages etc. One leads to another and within a short time you have several leads.
To aid you in this process, you can use Fake Accounts to lure them in, trace their IP address, and other identifiable information. If they are convinced that you are a kid they are quite willing to reveal personal information.
Be careful while doing so. Do not let the culprits identify you. The don’t exactly harm you physically but can cause you trouble online (speaking from personal experience).
Here are a few guides that will help you:
Identification & Tracking:
- How To Avoid Getting Hacked On Facebook.
- Important Guidelines For Facebook Group Admins.
- General Security.
Now, once you have found them, what to do next?
Your first instinct is to report it to Facebook. By this time you might be a member of groups of like minded people, you might share the profile/group/page there and ask them to report it as well.
A few hours/ day later the content is removed and you feel that you have done a good job.
But You Are Completely Wrong.
Getting something removed from Facebook is basically like wiping a crime scene clean. It destroys evidence. Sure Facebook may record some version of the content but it is inaccessible without a court order which in turn won’t be obtained unless there is some basic evidence.
So, you might be wondering, ‘What just let them be there?’. It’s natural to feel that way especially if it’s your first time. But the answer is, No, you must do something but you should it the proper way.
Here’s where the second parts begins:
While you are tracking abusers & predators, document everything. You must have a complete record of the following:
- Your Activity.
- The path followed to reach a particular content.
- Techniques used.
- Messages Exchanged.
- Information Found.
Be the investigator from the movies with lines connecting all pieces involved. This will have a dual effect, it will increase your credibility, thus increasing a chance of the Law Enforcement seriously looking into it and it will also help the Law Enforcement in their own investigation.
Note: While documenting, it is advisable to store all data in an encrypted form. Here’s ‘How To Encrypt Your Data‘
Now that you have sufficient evidence, you must contact Law Enforcement agencies. While doing so be extremely honest. They will let slide a few misdoings on your part but they hate liars & hoaxers. Just give them the facts with the evidence [Links, Screenshots etc. without cleaning the metadata].
But, if you live in a country where you do not trust the Law Enforcement agencies, DO NOT reveal your identity. Be careful if they ask you to meet them etc.
There are several online/offline ways of reporting. We have a list later on.
If you are wondering why we are doing this then, you need to know this. Pedophiles & Predators are like a Hydra. If you get someone’s account suspended most probably he/she will be back with another account within a few minutes. Many even simultaneously use several accounts.
But when you report them with sufficient evidence to the Law Enforcement you are striking the root. They have the technical & physical capabilities to arrest the person or at least restrict his computer access.
Here’s a list by regions:
- United States: https://report.cybertip.org/ (Managed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation).
- Canada: http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/ncecc-cncee/report-denoncer-eng.htm (Managed by the Royal Canada Mounted Police.
- United Kingdom: https://www.ceop.police.uk/safety-centre/ (Managed by National Crime Agency)
- European Union: https://www.europol.europa.eu/report-a-crime/report-cybercrime-online (Managed by Europol)
- Australia: https://forms.afp.gov.au/online_forms/ocset_form (Managed by Australia Federal Police)
- Italy: https://www.commissariatodips.it/area-riservata/registrati.html?sender=editinformazioni (Managed by Italian Commissary)
- Netherlands: https://www.politie.nl/aangifte-of-melding-doen (Managed by Dutch Police)
- New Zealand: http://www.police.govt.nz/contact-us/how-report-crime (Managed by New Zealand Police)
- India: http://cybercrimecomplaints.com/cyber-crime-cells-india (Cyber Crime Cell)
Note: In case of India, I recommend contacting the Cyber Crime Cell Mumbai, they are the quickest to respond.
- United Arab Emirates: https://www.moi.gov.ae/ar/default.aspx In case of UAE, be very careful. Judge for yourselves whether reporting will cause more damage.
General Reporting Line For The Interpol: https://www.interpol.int/Forms/Contact_INTERPOL.
IMPORTANT: During all of this, stay alert and keep your judgement honed. You are directly dealing with both criminals & law enforcement agencies. It’s important for you to stay on the right side of the things as well as in the Legal White Zone.
DISCLAIMER: The article is for educational purposes only. I am not responsible for any actions taken by the readers and it’s consequences.
Author: Rohan Dandavate
Public Key: [http://bluesphereobserver.com/rohan-dandavate/]