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Technological Effects on Victim Identification in Police Investigations of Child Abuse Material

Conference paper
Authors Marie Eneman
Published in 24th UK Academy for Information Systems International Conference Proceeding. Oxford, UK, April, 2019
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Applied Information Technology (GU)
Language en
Keywords digital technologies, technological affordance, child abuse material, police investigations, victim identification
Subject categories Children, Law and Society, Technology and social change, Human Computer Interaction


The development and use of digital technologies have profound effects in society. One the one hand, the technologies can be used for illegal activities such as the production, distribution and possession of child abuse material. On the other hand, the technologies can be used as powerful and effective tools to combat and investigate these crimes. Child abuse material constitutes crime evidence portraying serious and harmful crimes against children. Law enforcement should therefore focus their efforts on identifying both the offender and the victim involved in the creation of the material. Traditionally law enforcement agencies have focused their efforts on the offenders that have been in focus for identification, prosecution and often also for rehabilitation. Thus, law enforcement has devoted resources towards convictions for the distribution and possession of child abuse material rather than attempting to identify and protect the children in the material. This research in progress paper will therefore explore how digital technologies affect victim identification in police investigations of child abuse material. To explore this area, a qualitative study has been applied with semi-structured interviews with individual police officers at the Swedish Police.

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