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Microsoft Tip Leads To Child Porn Arrest In Pennsylvania 353

Posted by timothy
from the looking-looking-everywhere dept.
Shades of the recent arrest based on child porn images flagged by Google in an email, mrspoonsi writes A tip-off from Microsoft has led to the arrest of a man in Pennsylvania who has been charged with receiving and sharing child abuse images. It flagged the matter after discovering that an image involving a young girl had been allegedly saved to the man's OneDrive cloud storage account. According to court documents, the man was subsequently detected trying to send two illegal pictures via one of Microsoft's live.com email accounts. Police arrested him on 31 July.
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Microsoft Tip Leads To Child Porn Arrest In Pennsylvania

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  • by mrspoonsi (2955715) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:05PM (#47617263)
    Dropbox? Apple iCloud?
  • by Mal-2 (675116) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:10PM (#47617291) Homepage Journal

    Sweet Jesus, if you're going to send things in the clear, you have no idea who might be able to lay eyes on it. This goes for storing things locally -- people have been busted for stored files when they take a machine in for repair as well.

    When in doubt, encrypt. When not in doubt, get in doubt.

  • by Sonny Yatsen (603655) * on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:19PM (#47617357) Journal

    I don't understand the surprise people are experiencing from the revelation that Google and Microsoft scans the stuff you upload to their cloud storage systems.

    You are literally giving them a copy of your files, and generally speaking, you also agreed to allow them to allow them to scan your stuff. Google Drive's terms of service explicitly states that your stuff will be scanned:

    "Our automated systems analyze your content (including emails) to provide you personally relevant product features, such as customized search results, tailored advertising, and spam and malware detection. This analysis occurs as the content is sent, received, and when it is stored. "

    Why would anyone reasonably think that their stuff is somehow private when it's in the cloud?

  • by iamacat (583406) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:22PM (#47617389)

    We all know what kind files they will scan for next. Because MPAA/RIAA are way more important than children!

  • by thieh (3654731) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:28PM (#47617441)
    The problem usually comes down to that "personally relevant product features, such as customized search results, tailored advertising, and spam and malware detection" didn't include "days in court" nor "jail time" as their catalog of "personally relevant product features".
  • No you do not (Score:3, Insightful)

    by thieh (3654731) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:39PM (#47617563)
    This is what studying ethics/morality feels like. And this isn't exactly progress, unless you count "progressing to a police state". Many things in life are conflicts of various field of interest, and it is up to the philosophers/activists/lawyers/judges/lobbyists/legislature to figure them out.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:50PM (#47617687)
    So I take it you will allow me to move in to your home and watch your every intimate movement? All in the name of making sure you aren't distributing child porn, of course.
  • by preaction (1526109) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:56PM (#47617761)

    No, and that is a ludicrous analogy.

    It's more, I should not go into someone else's home, leave my stuff there, and when a legally-dubious thing happens to be in my stuff in their house, I should not expect them to simply let it go (considering that a lot of legally-dubious things have clauses about "conspiracy" and "required to report").

  • by jeIIomizer (3670945) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:57PM (#47617769)

    Hey, pedophiles have serious mental issues and deserve a special place in prison .

    A pedophile is nothing more than a person who is sexually attracted to prepubescent children. Not all pedophiles rape or even look at child porn, and not all child rapists are even necessarily pedophiles.

    Also, why do they need a special place in prison? Why not 'normal' rapists, or murderers? Do they also get special places in prison? If not, then why single out this group? Because mentions of 'the children' cause your irrational brain to malfunction?

    that you report the existence of any of this kind of stuff because of the harm that is caused to the children.

    Voodoo is not real. Voodoo does not exist. Images will not harm people like voodoo dolls. Any 'harm' is caused by their own reaction, assuming that they even see it. But if the mere thought that an image of themselves could be out there is enough to make themselves emotionally unstable, then there is nothing that can be done for them, because censorship is - in practice - futile.

    So in this case, it IS for the children and it's hard to argue with the logic.

    No, it's easy, and that's because there is no logic; just a strong desire for more and more government control over what information is accessible to people.

  • by Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @04:59PM (#47617787)
    Here's a novel idea...let's get the downloaders the mental help that they obviously need and save the torches and pitchforks for the ones that are taking the photos/videos.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @05:01PM (#47617813)

    Your comparison is perfect, assuming you want people searching through your stuff for legally dubious things. The big issue is that this searching could be expanded to catch other, less harmful files. What if they were searching for generic pornography, leaked government documents, or "backups" of programs/media? Surely that isn't something you'd want.

  • by dave562 (969951) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @05:08PM (#47617867) Journal

    The harm is in the production of the images in the first place, not in the viewing of them. The viewing supports the production. Or the production supports the viewing. I am not sure, given that I do not operate in those circles. From what I have read about it, the consensus seems to be that most kiddie porn is produced by family members abusing their younger relatives.

    It can probably be argued that the people making the images would continue to make them even if they did not have an audience to share them with. Even so, there is still some social value in discouraging people from consuming the images. If people are interested in the images, that is a form of social acceptance for those who make the images.

    It is bad enough that people have these demons that they struggle with. It is terrible that they abuse those who are too young to protect themselves and in most cases, do not even realize how wrong the activities are. The last thing that we need as a society is to encourage others to consume the evidence of that abuse.

  • by MindPrison (864299) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @05:12PM (#47617899) Journal
    ...was actually much more interesting to read than the actual news, where to start...lets see now:

    - We have a member here who thinks Pedophilia is a disease and think Pedophilia equals abusing children:
    He/she is one of the numerous clueless people out there who have NO idea if this is actually a disease or just like Homosexuality. Arguing with such a person is completely futile, but they'll always be in numbers. It's kind of voting for stupid. (Yes, that was a H2G2 reference).
    - We also have several members here who thinks Pedophiles should be arrested and behind bars just for being Pedophiles, never mind if they committed any crimes.
    - We've got the usual anonymous coward zealots that thinks that if you don't have anything to hide, there is nothing to worry about.
    Wanna bet who's next on tomorrows "sick" list? It can't possibly be you, can it?
    - We've got the next predictable bunch who immediately attacks someone who defends the freedom of the individual, and calls them Pedophiles, because they can't POSSIBLY be normal or straight if they defend Pedophiles, now can they?
    (Who exactly defended who now?) Never mind the actual facts, just as long as you get YOUR hidden agenda across.
    - And then we have those who thinks that images of kids being exploited are okay, just as long as you bust the purps behind the images, and not the users.
    (And who are the users now again? Sick Pedophiles, or nasty voyeuristic perverts that wants to get a kick out of something unthinkable and illegal?) And where do we draw the line? Naked kids? Kids posing sexually, and how do you define that?), family photos available to all? Imagine the number of youtube and imageshack users you'd have to arrest or at least suspect. Who do you trust today?

    I'll let you in on a little secret of mine, for years I've been working undercover together with a police agent who is a close friend of mine to uncover several secret child-abuse rings in various countries - trust me when I say...this is the WORST JOB IN THE WORLD. I got into it because some family members of mine was abused, and I thought I'd use my skills for something good. Over time I learned that albeit we DID get a lot of these rings busted, we also ruined several families lives, destroyed childhoods because the law and common sense doesn't mix at all.

    Everyone sees red when it comes to Child Abuse, and rightly so - but it is important...no...VITAL for progress that we somewhat keep our heads above water here and try to think rationally. It is NOT rational to point fingers at everyone who wants anonymity as a suspect of anything, it is NOT rational to call every Pedophile a CHILD ABUSER, it is NOT rational to think that if your opinion differs from the stupid masses...that you are in LEAGUE with ANYONE who happens to NOT fit your OPINION today (eg. those who want to HELP PEDOPHILES - are NOT nessesarily Pedophiles themselves, but a lot of the angry mob especially in here seem to think so).

    I get upset by this, because I think of Mr. Allan Turing, who was just recently pardoned by the British for the grave injustice brought upon him just for having a sexual preference he might not even have ANY control over (we're not talking urges and constraint here, we're talking sexual PREFERENCES).

    I do NOT want a society that becomes totalitarian where every deviant of nature becomes a freak to be hung, burned and ridiculed for just being different. I see YOUR mind as a private thing, just like your diary as a private thing. What you THINK of or FANTASIZE of is YOUR BUSINESS ONLY, and NO ONE ELSE.
    And there is nothing that gets me fired up more than someone using child abuse in ever shape and form, fantasy or drawn, real or not - to excuse severe abuse of human rights, to pry into our daily lives with the law in hand...and with a lot of supporters that mean well...but really have NO CLUE of the REAL danger they're actually putting themselves in by supporting this ludicrous development.

    Wake up and smell the coffee, people!
  • by jeIIomizer (3670945) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @05:14PM (#47617923)

    The harm is in the production of the images in the first place

    I agree 100%.

    The viewing supports the production.

    People's actions are their own. If the rapists rape, then it is their fault for raping, whether or not they're doing it for a profit or because they want others to see the videos or images. Going after people who merely look at the content is blaming them for other people's actions, and I don't condone that.

    But even if that were true, I'm 100% opposed to government censorship, even if it keeps people 'safe.' So no such arguments will work on me.

    The last thing that we need as a society is to encourage others to consume the evidence of that abuse.

    The last thing we need is censorship.

  • by Bob9113 (14996) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @05:41PM (#47618143) Homepage

    The viewing supports the production. Or the production supports the viewing. I am not sure,

    Well, let me clear it up for you, since it's a pretty simple one-way cause and effect: Production supports viewing. Viewing, in and of itself, does exactly nothing to support anything else.

    Purchasing? That could support production. Page views on a site that runs ads? That could support production. Pulling from a site that keeps a record of the number of downloads, such that the uploader gets some kind of gratification watching the counter go up? That could support production.

    But viewing, in itself, does not support production.

    The last thing that we need as a society is to encourage others to consume the evidence of that abuse.

    Encourage them? How are we as a society encouraging the viewers? I'm pretty sure it is common knowledge that we, the vast majority of society, find this behavior repugnant. I don't think they sit in their greasy basements thinking how proud their city council would be if they only knew.

  • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @05:43PM (#47618159)

    I'm more concerned about where the scans extend from here. It would be relatively trivial to include "scene release" pirated content in a similar hash group, and report it accordingly.

    I think the real point is that any of these companies could have done this at any time. It isn't so much a matter of "Look! they did something great!" (and they did)... it's more a matter of: look at the shitty privacy intrusion they've committed on hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people, in order to accomplish that one great thing.

    Freedom has a cost. And part of that cost is that some people will get hurt that otherwise might not have been hurt. But it's a cost worth paying, because otherwise millions more pay far more, even if it's only a little bit every day. Eventually that turns into a lot every day. That's not paranoia, that's history. Over and over and over again.

  • by Ol Olsoc (1175323) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @06:56PM (#47618567)

    Easier to say when you're not the child getting molested. Which isn't to say you're wrong, but all too often the "FREEEEDOM!!!" crowd misses the very real costs that hurt very real (and very helpless) people. Its not as simple as all freedom all the time, we really do need a healthy balance.

    But your problem sir, and it is a really big one, is that who gets to decide that balance?

    I worked with a guy who once said. "I don't care if they come into my bedroom and fuck my wife, as long as they keep the country secure". He was willing to give up any semblance of freedom for his "security".

    Fot you see, there are people here, just as intense as the Freedom people you think are missing the point, who would have every aspect of your life intruded upon, mandatory searches, and no privacy whatsoever.

    Thet's their idea of a healthy balance.

    But seriously, storing anything in "the cloud" means that it will be looked at. Whover the fucker is, good for him. There is such a thing as criminal stupidity.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @07:05PM (#47618647)

    I don't feel safe knowing that NCMEC has the collection of illegal pictures. I think we need to track down, incarcerate and prosecute everyone involved with NCMEC.

    Children are suffering all over the world due to the fact that NCMEC has illegal pictures. Please think of the children and allow us to bring justice to NCMEC.

    Somebody please think of the children!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @07:05PM (#47618651)

    except we don't arrest people for photos of any other type of crime scene. those rape photos couldn't be stopped. how would the DMCA even apply?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @10:36PM (#47619865)

    And while you're at it, don't forget to drag in all people that view 'rape porn', 'snuff porn', and of course all the people that playing violent video games.

    Because, naturally, if they get their jollies from viewing and playing this stuff, it's only a short distance to doing it. And before you know it, half the adult population will be taking pictures of themselves raping/killing/bashing.

  • by dave562 (969951) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @11:14PM (#47620003) Journal

    I agree. And this is why I posed the question to the OP. He is against "any" censorship. I was curious if that also applies to censorship of negative things that happen to someone close to him who he presumably loves and cares for.

    It is one thing to try to portray kiddie porn as "just pictures". It is another thing entirely when they are "just pictures" of your child, or your niece.

    This is going to be a bit too metaphysical for this audience, but there truly is "good" and "evil" energy in the world. I do not mean in the Christian sense of heaven and hell. I mean real evil. Real, emotional and mental sickness that should have no place in a civilized society. Yet at the same time, an evil that is inevitable given the reality that the universe must be balanced, and that every action must have an equal and opposite reaction. Evil that is the polar opposite of love and compassion and caring.

The reason why worry kills more people than work is that more people worry than work.

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