Feeds

Police swoop on Internet paedophiles

Largest ever UK raids

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Security for virtualized datacentres

A series of raids was mounted this morning on the homes of suspected Internet paedophiles.

Operation Appal, which was led by Greater Manchester Police's (GMP) obscene publications unit, focused on individuals suspected of using the Internet to exchange and store obscene pictures of children. It is the culmination of a four month investigation led by GMP.

A spokeswoman for GMP said the operation was the largest ever operation of its kind in the UK and involved raids on 43 address by 25 police forces and the seizure of computer equipment.

So far 22 people have been arrested and are being questioned about offences related to the Protection of Children Act. More arrests are likely to follow.

In a statement, Inspector Terry Jones of GMP's Obscene Publications Unit said: "Work by the Obscene Publications Unit identifies those people abusing one of the most vulnerable groups in our society, and we will continue to track down those individuals who believe the Internet gives them the anonymity to continue to trade in obscene pictures."

SurfControl, whose Internet filtering software recently blocked access to The Register for many of our readers, was responsible for providing GMP with customised software to help officers locate and track Internet users involved in possessing and distributing indecent images of children.

According to SurfControl, where previously 60 man-hours of Internet checking were needed to develop leads on 16 suspects using its software meant the same task could be performed in 16 man-hours. This allowed police resources to be directed more efficiently.

A spokeswoman for GMP assured us that officers "manually checked" all the content flagged as obscene by the SurfControl software. This provides welcome reassurance for us at Vulture Central, we thought SoHo's dirty squad might be coming round to kick our door in.

SurfControl's Cyber Patrol blocked The Register in order to " prevent [customer's] children or pupils from being able to surf Web sites containing sexually explicit, racist or inflammatory material".

This ban, followed our publication of a story (carried by other news services - who weren't blacklisted) about a site that provided information on how to disable filtering software, called Peacefire.org. SurfControl subsequently lifted its censorship of The Register after a large number of our adult readers objected to its actions. ®

Related stories

Pedo porn ring gets slap on wrist
Paedophile says why he loves the Net

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Bono apologises for iTunes album dump
Megalomania, generosity and FEAR of irrelevance drove group to Apple deal
HBO shocks US pay TV world: We're down with OTT. Netflix says, 'Gee'
This affects every broadcaster, every cable guy
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
French 'terror law' declares WAR on the INTERNET itself, say digi-rights folks
Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité: Two out of three ain't bad
SCREW YOU, EU: BBC rolls out Right To Remember as Google deletes links
Not even Google can withstand the power of Auntie
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express
Series finally hits stride, but Clara's U-turn is baffling
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
America's super-secret X-37B plane returns to Earth after nearly TWO YEARS aloft
674 days in space for US Air Force's mystery orbital vehicle
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.