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Fishy porn search engine launched by teenage dotcom millionaire

Is Mr Cohen telling porky pies (again)?

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The teenager (he's 18 now, we think) that made his name by selling Jewish portal Jewishnet to Durlacher is at it again. This time he's launched a free porn search engine, hunt4porn.com.

The thing is, every time we hear about Mr Benjamin Cohen, we grow more sceptical of his claims. Initially, Jewishnet - basically a Jewish portal - came to everyone's attention when the company that owns his Dad's firm Durlacher decided to buy it. Mr Cohen hinted heavily that Jewishnet was worth £5 million, although we don't know what it actually went for and these were the days of Web lunacy. He then appeared in the Sunday Times Net millionaires rundown.

Ben then cropped up promoting his new portal CyberBritain.com. We'd never heard of it, but that didn't stop Ben claiming it was one of the "leading online services in Europe" with "a staggering 420 million page impressions". Hmmm. CyberBritain consists of nine portals and it looked as though some creative accounting was helping boost the portal significance.

Now, this porn search engine apparently has 50,000 registered users. Even before it has been launched! Hunt4porn unsurprisingly forms part of the CyberBritain group and is ready for use. We checked it out. You gotta give an email address to get hold of a password, which we did.

Undeniably, there are a lot of links to porn sites but it is sorely lacking in what most of us want from modern search engines - filtering and personalisation. And so "free" pics invariably arrive at the same route as if you typed "free porn" into any old search engine. (Don't know what we mean? Hint: you won't find any free porn.)

The choice is overwhelming and confusing. In short, there is very little invested in the backend and so all you can expect is trees and trees of links. All well and good, but with the size of the Internet and the more technically advanced engines on offer, you have to question the viability of this engine and also of CyberBritain as a whole.

Of course if Ben is smart, doesn't want to inject millions in software and would like to make a fast buck, he would boost the engines' profiles - what about getting it in the press with inflated hit figures? - and then sell it to some fool company will millions to spare. We wonder if he's thought of that.

And we still haven't got to the bottom of the mysterious Internet Awards that saw Ben pick up just about every award under the sun back in February. ®

Related Links

Teenage dot com sensation sweeps Mystery Awards
Jewish Web site values teen entrepreneur at millions

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