Child pornography via Tweet: pedophiles abuse Twitter as a distribution channel

(PresseBox) ( Berlin, )
Over 100 million Internet users already share their news via Twitter with anyone who follows them on the micro-blogging site. However, child porn consumers have now also discovered Twitter as another communications channel. "Hidden behind usually innocuous-sounding user names, child porn consumers tweet to each other, especially since it allows them to distribute child pornography quickly and easily", explains Dennis Grabowski, chairman of the not-profit, non-governmental organisation "no abuse in internet" (naiin).

With just a few clicks, users can post links on Twitter to websites, videos and images. "More and more tweets with links to Internet content containing child pornography are being posted", says naiin's chairman, referring to the increasing number of Twitter accounts reported to the international Internet hotline for illegal Internet content, which is operated by naiin (

Often, pedophile Twitter users also use the micro-blogging site to let each other know when child pornography websites are taken down or blocked. Like-minded individuals are notified by tweet of the new addresses (URLs) where they can find the sites in future. "Twitter is therefore also increasingly being used by child porn consumers to lessen the impact of websites being removed and blocked", explains Dennis Grabowski. This makes the micro-blogging service a useful information system for many consumers of child pornography.

Pedophiles primarily cash in on the apparent harmlessness of Twitter: very few people suspect that links lead to child pornography and the Twitter community is big enough for such activities to remain undetected for a long time. "However it is precisely the size of the Twitter community that gives us the opportunity to do something about this", says Dennis Grabowski. Twitter users who come across tweets that link to child pornography on the Internet are therefore being urged to report them to Twitter, naiin or a law enforcement agency.

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