ai-lawyerAI can be used for a lot of things, and recently we learnt that Facebook was relying on it to help flag offensive live videos. Amazon themselves have also launched an AI-based image recognition tool, so it’s safe to say that the use of AI is on the rise. Over at Interpol, it seems that AI is also being used to track down child pornography on the internet.

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Developed by iCOP (Identifying and Catching Originators in P2P Networks), the team consists of researchers from Lancaster University, the German Research Centre for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), and University College Cork, Ireland. What makes iCOP’s technology different from other image recognition systems is that it can identify new material, which in turn can help authorities and law enforcement officials track down victims and arrest the perpetrators.

The system is currently being trialed in the Lyon region of France. Speaking to WIRED, Awais Rashid, a professor at Lancaster University said, “It significantly reduces the overhead for investigators. Instead of having to trawl through large numbers of images and videos to identify new child abuse material, investigators are provided with automated matches which are highly accurate. In practice, this means investigators having to look at a small number of images and videos rather than thousands.”

So far while the trial has been pretty successful, there is one area that it has trouble with, and that is the dark web, but that is one area that the iCOP team is hoping to look into in the future. In the meantime the toolkit has already been made freely available to law enforcement.

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