NEW YORK, NY, U.S.A., February 3, 2021 / — Nearly seven out of 10 (68%) Americans want law enforcement to be able to identify and track users of online child pornography, according to a new national survey by The New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (The NYSPCC), the world’s first child protection agency.

This segment of the population supports the secret installation by federal and state law enforcement of malware software on the devices of people who visit child pornography websites through anonymous internet networks.

Further, 72% of Americans want technology companies to be required by law to actively search for child pornography on the internet. Current law only requires them to report images or videos of child pornography to law enforcement as they are encountered, as opposed to actively searching for and reporting them. Overall, nearly three-quarters (74%) of the American public believes not enough is being done to prevent online distribution of child pornography.

“Each time a pornographic image is circulated, the child in the photo is irreparably harmed again. Despite being in the best position to rid the internet of child pornography, technology companies have yet to do nearly enough to protect the most vulnerable among us,” said Mary Pulido, PhD., Executive Director of The NYSPCC. “It is irresponsible and a detriment to children’s health and safety to continue to look the other way when these horrific images and videos are shared on their very own platforms.”

“Whether through the use of malware to detect child pornography users or expanded requirements for reporting, it’s clear that more initiative needs to be taken to hold both perpetrators and enablers accountable, and to prevent our children from becoming needless victims of sexual exploitation,” she added.

The survey of 1,000 adults in the U.S. by The NYSPCC also revealed that Americans strongly favor increased legislative action and funding by Congress in the fight against the sexual exploitation of children over the internet. More than three out of five (63%) of Americans support a proposed U.S. Senate bill that would provide $5 billion in funding to law enforcement agencies to address this problem, while 47% prefer having a commission to develop voluntary “Best Practices” on how internet platforms can stop the spread of online sexual exploitation of children.

“It is up to us as a society—child protection agencies, policymakers, technology companies, families, and each and every individual—to ensure that we do everything in our power to safeguard those who cannot protect themselves,” Dr. Pulido said. “Increased support and funding would significantly enhance our collective efforts to quash the sexual exploitation of children over the internet.”

To obtain the full set of findings of the survey, please contact

Survey Methodology
The results reported here are based on completed interviews with a national probability sample of 1,000 Americans, age 18 and older. The research was designed for The NYSPCC by Michaels Opinion Research, Inc. and utilized the AmeriSpeak panel. Funded and operated by NORC at the University of Chicago, AmeriSpeak is a probability-based panel designed to be representative of the U.S. household population. The mixed-mode panel (online and telephone) provides sample coverage of approximately 97% of the U.S. household population. Data have been weighted to national U.S. Census benchmarks and are balanced by gender, age, education, race/ethnicity, and region. The survey was fielded August 17-20, 2020 and the tabulated results have a margin of error of ±4.3 percentage-points.

The New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (The NYSPCC) is one of the most highly respected child protective agencies in the world. Founded in 1875, The NYSPCC helps the most vulnerable children of our community recover from trauma. And, more importantly, it helps prevent child abuse through its work with parents, teachers, children and foster care agencies. The NYSPCC’s amazing work is used as a model for child welfare agencies across the nation. The NYSPCC has investigated more than 650,000 cases on behalf of over two million children and has educated over 53,000 professionals working with children on child abuse and neglect issues. Read more about The NYSPCC at

Erin Freilich
High10 Media
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