'Millions of pedophiles target kids': Facebook and Instagram under fire

 December 26, 2023

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

A new encryption program launched for Meta platforms Facebook and Instagram makes it harder to track down online child predators, former employees, and other experts charge.

The social media conglomerate launched encryption for direct messages on those software programs earlier this month, but a report from the New York Post charged that it helps pedophiles.

Encryption means no one but the sender and recipient can see the contents of messages.

The additional software programming was announced a few years ago, and it's been controversial since.

Former engineering director David Erb resigned from Meta in 2019 in protest of the initiative, he told the Wall Street Journal in a recent interview, the report explained.

Erb had made his concerns known while at Meta because such encryption software "would shield predators who preyed upon children," the report said.

Facebook already had a program allowing people to "track down" children through its scheme to offer "suggestions of possible friends."

Erb had charged, "It was a hundred times worse than any of us expected. There were millions of pedophiles targeting tens of millions of children."

The report cited the case in 2020 of Karl Quitter of Chicago, who used an alias to solicit sexually explicit photos and videos of at least nine teenage girls via Facebook.

In that case, the suspect was accused of promising money for food and medicine in exchange for "sexually explicit images."

Because the messages were noticed, he was flagged and authorities notified.

According to the report, Brian Fitzgerald, of the nation's Department of Homeland Security, explained, "A random stranger shouldn’t be able to — off of first contact — go to encrypted communications with a minor.

A spokesman for Meta said the company has a long list of "child safety efforts."

Another victim committed suicide after falling victim who a solicitation for explicit images, but failing to come up with the cash for extortion. Several individuals are facing charges now.

report from Breitbart confirmed former employees and child safety advocates are criticizing the Zuckerberg moves.

It explained the tech, "while protecting user privacy, can also be misused by individuals with malicious intentions, including child predators."

While citing instances of attacks on children, the report noted a defense from Andy Stone, of Meta, who claims the company works on various efforts with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

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