Should we Celebrate or Condemn Apple's New Child Protection Measures?

August 27, 2021

BIDS Faculty Affiliate Hany Farid – a professor at UC Berkeley and a Senior Advisor to the Counter Extremism Project (CEP) – recently authored this opinion piece in Newsweek. ———

"Last week, Apple announced that it would deploy hashing technologies to protect children from sexual abuse and exploitation. In response, child-rights advocates cheered and privacy-rights advocates jeered. Both, however, are putting too much stock in Apple's announcement, which is neither cause for celebration nor denunciation.

"Each year, hundreds of millions of images and videos of child sexual abuse circulate online. The majority of children in these materials are prepubescent, and many of them are infants and toddlers. In addition, every day children are exposed to unsolicited sexual advances and sexual content online. We must do more to protect our children, both online and offline.

"For the past two decades, the technology industry as a whole has been lethargic, even negligent, in responding to the threats posed by the global trade of child sexual abuse material (CSAM), live-streaming of child sexual abuse, predatory grooming and sexual extortion. At the same time, the industry has made every effort to make sure its products and services get into—and remain in—the hands of children."

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Should we Celebrate or Condemn Apple's New Child Protection Measures?
August 13, 2021  |   Hany Farid   |   Newsweek



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Hany Farid

EECS and School of Information, UC Berkeley
Faculty Affiliate