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FBI issues sobering statistics on child pornography in the United States, dark web

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has issued some sobering statistics on child pornography in the United States. PHOTO: MGN

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has issued some sobering statistics on child pornography in the United States.

In a posting to the agency's website titled "The Scourge of Child Pornography," the FBI states "there is still much work to be done." As an example, the report cites a February case in Arizona where a woman was found mailing her jailed husband images of girls as young as 9-years-old.

The report states many of the people who engage in the production and distribution of child pornography come from all walks of life and most don't even have a criminal history. Many of the crimes are carried out on the "dark web," also know as Tor -a browser which allows users to remain anonymous.

Among the eye-opening statistics shared, a Department of Justice 2016 report shows one website on Tor hosted 1.3 million images depicting children subjected to violent sexual abuse. Analysis of these specific files identified at least 73 new victims previously unknown to law enforcement.

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) estimates over 26 million sexual abuse images and videos were received by their analysts in 2015 alone. Since 2002, more than 10,500 victims depicted in child porn have been identified by police.

One website on the dark web was shown to have 200,000 registered users and 100,000 individuals had accessed the site in just 12 days.

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