Tech Giant or Law Enforcer?
The pandemic has changed our world in many ways. Perhaps the biggest changes have been the mass transition to work from home and the introduction of more virtual doctor appointments. This new use of technology turned into a nightmare for one father who had to send pictures to his son’s pediatrician.
Mark, a San Francisco father who did not want his last name published, took pictures of his son’s swollen genitals to be sent to his doctor before their scheduled video visit. Mark used his android to take the pictures and texted them to his wife, who then sent them to the nurse at their son’s doctor’s office. Two days later, Mark received a notification that his Google accounts were locked for a “serious violation” of their policies. Google had flagged these images as child pornography and notified San Francisco Police of their findings. As a result, Mark lost decades of contact information, emails, photos, and had to change his phone number and carrier.
System To Detect Possession of Child Pornography
Mark is not the only person who has been impacted by this Google detection system. Google has rolled out the technology to help combat the spread of child porn online, and it has been hailed as a success by its supporters. Apple planned to release a similar program in 2021, where it would scan all user’s iCloud photos in search of known sexually explicit depictions of children. Ultimately, Apple decided to delay the rollout indefinitely after they faced strong resistance from privacy groups.
This technology raises serious questions surrounding privacy. And it can have major ramifications for someone like Mark who lost all of his data, despite the system flagging his images in error. Even though San Francisco Police quickly realized the images were not harmful, did not press any charges, and did not open an investigation, Google has still refused to lift its permanent account ban.
Recently, in the Southern District of Ohio, an individual on federal supervised release is facing a violation due to Google contacting law enforcement concerning pornographic images of children on his account. Not only is this a possible violation of probation, but the individual could face new charges of possessing child pornography.
Possessing Child Porn Defense Attorney
Our world will continue to be increasingly dependent on technology, and the battle between stopping criminal activity and preserving our privacy will always be an issue. If you find yourself facing criminal charges call experienced attorney, Joseph Edwards, to ensure the best results!