Google and Bing in Action to Prevent Spread of AI Child Porn

The internet is a powerful tool for learning, communication, entertainment, and innovation. However, it also has a dark side, where some people use it to create and share harmful and illegal content, such as child sexual abuse material (CSAM). In recent years, a new form of CSAM has emerged, which is generated by artificial intelligence (AI).

In this article we will explore what AI child porn is, how Google and Bing in Action to Prevent Spread of AI Child Porn, what harms it causes, what challenges it poses for detection and removal, what regulations are in place to combat it and recommendations are for search engines and other online platforms to prevent its spread.

What is AI Generated Child Porn?

AI-generated child porn is a type of CSAM that is created or altered by using AI techniques, such as deep learning, generative adversarial networks (GANs), or neural style transfer. These techniques can produce realistic and convincing images or videos of children that do not exist or that have been modified from existing ones.

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How Prevalent is AI Generated Child Porn?

The exact prevalence of AI child porn is hard to estimate, as it is often mixed with real CSAM or hidden in encrypted platforms or dark web forums. However, some indicators suggest that it is a growing phenomenon. The Australian ESafety Commissioner reported that in 2023, 10% of all CSAM reports involved synthetic or manipulated images.

The UK’s NCA alerts to the growing accessibility and realism of AI child porn, a grave child protection threat. Cornell University’s study reports over 100,000 2023 deepfake uploads, 96% pornographic, some involving minors, like face-swapped celebrity or influencer content.

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What are the Harms of AI Generated Child Porn?

  • AI child porn, whether real or fabricated, violates children’s rights and dignity by depicting them in degrading, sexualized contexts.
  • It fuels the demand for real CSAM. AI child porn acts as a gateway or a substitute for real CSAM, increasing the appetite and tolerance of perpetrators for more extreme and violent content.
  • It harms the mental health and well-being of children. AI child porn may cause psychological distress and trauma to children who are exposed to it, either accidentally or intentionally.
  • It undermines the trust and safety of online platforms. AI child porn may erode the confidence and security of users who rely on online platforms.

What are the Challenges of Detecting and Removing AI Generated Child Porn?

  • It evades the existing tools and methods for identifying and reporting CSAM. AI child porn may not match the existing hashes, signatures, or keywords that are used to flag and report CSAM.
  • It adapts and improves faster than the countermeasures. AI child porn may use advanced and sophisticated techniques that are constantly evolving and improving, making it harder to detect.
  • It requires collaboration and coordination among multiple stakeholders. AI child porn may involve multiple actors, jurisdictions, and sectors, making it difficult to trace and stop.

How are Search Engines Like Google and Bing Involved in this Issue?

Search engines can unintentionally enable AI child porn dissemination by indexing and promoting such content. To prevent its spread, they must implement robust content moderation and reporting mechanisms and cooperate with authorities to swiftly remove and block access to such material, safeguarding children’s rights and well-being.

  • By blocking or removing websites or platforms that host or distribute such content.
  • By blocking or removing tools or software that can create such content.
  • By warning users about the potential harm or illegality of such content.

Search engines have taken some measures and initiatives to address this issue. For example, Google has developed a tool called Content Safety API, which can help detect and classify CSAM on online platforms. Bing has developed a tool called PhotoDNA, which can help identify and remove CSAM from online platforms.

Both search engines have also partnered with various organizations to share data and resources on CSAM detection and prevention. Australia has also mandated search engines to remove AI child abuse content from their results. Bing has also partnered with various organizations, such as IWF, NCMEC, and Project Arachnid.

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What New Rules has Australia put in Place to Address this Issue?

Australia has introduced new regulations to combat this problem, which are part of its online safety code. The online safety code is a set of rules and standards that regulate various online services in terms of their safety and responsibility. The online safety code was announced by Australia’s eSafety commissioner Julie Inman Grant.

The online safety code will affect search engines and their users in terms of preventing AI child porn. The online safety code will require search engines to take appropriate steps to prevent the spread of CSAM, including AI-generated CSAM. Some of the steps that search engines will have to take include:

  • Implementing safeguards to ensure that their search functions do not generate synthetic replicas of CSAM using generative AI
  • Implementing safeguards to ensure that their search results do not display or link to websites or platforms that host or distribute CSAM, including AI-generated CSAM
  • Implementing safeguards to ensure that their search results do not display or link to tools or software that can create CSAM using generative AI
  • Cooperating with the eSafety commissioner and other authorities in reporting and removing CSAM, including AI-generated CSAM
  • Educating and informing their users about the risks and harms of CSAM, including AI-generated CSAM

Benefits and Drawbacks

  • Reducing the availability and accessibility of CSAM, including AI-generated CSAM, on the internet
  • Protecting the rights and dignity of children who are victims or potential victims of CSAM, including AI-generated CSAM
  • Increasing the awareness and understanding of users about the issue of CSAM, including AI-generated CSAM
  • Limiting the freedom and choice of users in terms of accessing information and content online
  • Compromising the privacy and security of users in terms of their data and activities online
  • Creating technical and legal challenges for search engines in terms of complying with the online safety code

What are the Current Regulations and Initiatives to Combat AI Generated Child Porn?

Australia has unveiled regulations requiring internet search engines to crack down on AI child porn. The online safety code announced on Friday will require services such as Google, Bing, DuckDuckGo and Yahoo to take “appropriate steps” to prevent the spread of child exploitation material, including “synthetic” images created by AI.

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The UK has introduced a draft legislation that would require online platforms to scan for CSAM, including AI-generated content. The Online Safety Bill would impose a duty of care on platforms to protect users from harmful content, such as CSAM, terrorism, hate speech, cyberbullying, and disinformation.

The US proposes the EARN IT Act, aiming to restrict online platforms’ legal immunity under Section 230. It establishes a commission to set CSAM prevention guidelines, including AI-generated content detection. Non-compliant platforms risk losing immunity and facing legal action.

The Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children is a multi-stakeholder effort combatting all child violence, including online threats. Aligned with the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, it strives to end child violence by 2030 and manages the End Violence Fund, offering grants for projects targeting online child safety.

WePROTECT Global Alliance unites governments, tech firms, civil society, and more to combat online child sexual exploitation. It advocates the Model National Response (MNR) framework for comprehensive national strategies and hosts an annual summit to exchange best practices in this critical mission.

The Technology Coalition, founded in 2006 by tech giants like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and Twitter, strives to eliminate online child sexual exploitation. It collaborates on tech solutions, tools, and resources for CSAM detection and removal, while fostering research and innovation in this crucial fight.

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Guiding Principles for Online Platforms in Combatting AI Child Porn

  • Online platforms must establish and communicate clear, consistent policies on AI child porn, aligning them with global laws and standards for effective prohibition and removal.
  • Online platforms must use robust tech and human methods for proactive AI child porn detection and removal, continuously improving their accuracy and effectiveness.
  • Online platforms must report AI child porn to authorities, collaborate with stakeholders, and educate users about risks, prevention, and reporting.
  • Online platforms must support research and innovation against AI child porn with funding, data, and ethical AI principles. Encourage challenges and uphold human rights and security.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Conclusion

In conclusion, Google and Bing have implemented proactive measures to combat the spread of AI child porn. They have established clear policies aligned with global standards, employed robust detection and removal mechanisms, and actively cooperated with authorities and stakeholders.

Furthermore, their commitment to supporting research and innovation while prioritizing ethical AI principles demonstrates their dedication to safeguarding online spaces from this heinous threat. Their actions set an example for responsible and effective platform management in the digital age.

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