Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning , Cybercrime , Fraud Management & Cybercrime

Combating Child Abuse in the Age of AI-Generated Deepfakes

Guillermo Galarza on Need for Tech Readiness, Legal Solutions to Protect Children
Guillermo Galarza, vice president, partnerships and law enforcement training, International Center for Missing & Exploited Children

In the past year alone, investigators have received a staggering 30 million reports of online child sexual exploitation globally. This significant surge in crimes against children has been exacerbated by threat actors using AI-generated deepfakes images and video.

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This digital landscape, fortified by AI, end-to-end encryption and peer-to-peer networks, gives criminals an impenetrable shield of anonymity, making them difficult to apprehend. Meanwhile, legislative frameworks have struggled to keep pace with these rapid technological advancements.

Guillermo Galarza, vice president of partnerships and law enforcement training at the International Center for Missing and Exploited Children, said technology can also empower law enforcement agencies to confront and combat these crimes. This technique encompasses AI technologies and sophisticated crawlers - indispensable tools in identifying the millions of harrowing child exploitation images strewn across social media platforms, the dark web and covert peer-to-peer networks.

While AI can counter AI, most agencies are not adequately equipped with the advanced technology tools to investigate these types of crimes, Galarza said. This is in part due to expensive technology licenses, he said.

In this video interview with Information Security Media Group conducted prior to C0c0n 2023, Galarza discussed:

  • AI's role in combating crimes against children;
  • The state of technology preparedness of law enforcement agencies;
  • The pressing need for legislation to keep pace with tech advancements.

Galarza is responsible for ICMEC's law enforcement and criminal justice training program worldwide, including identifying child safety technology platforms offered to law enforcement. He has received honors and awards from the FBI National Academy, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Interpol specialist group on crimes against children.

About the Author

Shipra Malhotra

Shipra Malhotra

Managing Editor, ISMG

Malhotra has more than two decades of experience in technology journalism and public relations. She writes about enterprise technology and security-related issues and has worked at, Dataquest and The Indian Express.

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