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Excite embarrassed by kiddie porn links

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Excite.co.uk has removed a kiddie porn link from its search engine after it was reported earlier today to Scotland Yard's Computer Crime Unit. The link to "kids porno" and a "free kids porno picture gallery" was top of the list for anyone entering the simple and innocent word "kids". The other search results were harmless, including links to the Beano's Web site, an education site and the homepage of teen pop idols, New Kids On The Block. The kiddie porn link was removed this morning after Mike Hawkes, CEO of Internet Content Register contacted Excite advising them of the problem. He also contacted Scotland Yard. What dismayed Hawkes was the ease at which this could have been avoided. "Technically, it's relatively straight forward to demote certain words so that they appear well down a results list," he said. No one was available from Excite to talk about the porn problem but the Webco did issue a statement. "Porn sites are constantly trying to develop new ways of evading the filters and safeguards put in place by Excite," it read. "This is a never ending battle for us and for others in the industry as we strive to keep ahead of people who persist in marketing their sites in this malicious way. "We take the problem very seriously, constantly monitoring the site and making every possible effort to keep inappropriate material at bay," it said. ® Related stories: Hardcore porn ads sneak past Excite filters

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