Facebook has come out and defended itself following claims that it doesn’t employ the right measures to protect its users against human traffickers and sex abuse. While responding to a lawsuit filed against it, Facebook said that it works both internally and externally to thwart the efforts of such predators. Today, Facebook is the largest online social network with over one billion registered users.
A spokeswoman for Facebook reiterated that human trafficking is abhorrent and it isn’t allowed on the social network. She further stated that they use sophisticated technology to prevent such kind of abuse and also encourages its users to use the reporting links found across the site to alert their team of experts so that they can review any malicious content swiftly.
Recently, a Texas woman who was identified as Jane Doe filed a court case against the Mark Zuckerberg owned social network in Harris County District Court claiming that she was enticed into child prostitution at a tender age of 15 by an adult man who she met on Facebook. However, she acknowledged that she didn’t do enough to verify his identity and establish his motives before engaging him. She said that she didn’t expect sex traffickers to be lurking on Facebook and that the company would have done something to stop it from happening.
The Facebook Spokeswoman further claimed that the company works closely with anti-trafficking organizations and well-established technology companies who help them to report all instances of child sexual exploitation to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC).
In her lawsuit, Jane Doe argues that she was fooled by the child sex traffickers who sent her a message through Facebook in 2012 because the trafficker appeared to know some of her real-life friends. She went ahead to agree on meeting the man who even offered to console her after an altercation with her mother but instead of comforting her, the man raped her and went ahead to post her picture on Backpage.com so that she could be prostituted.
The federal authorities shut the notorious Backpage.com website earlier this year after a thorough investigation by the Justice Department into the allegation that the site was mainly used for prostitution. Backpage.com and several of its employees have been named in Doe’s case as the key defendants.
The lawsuit was filed several months after the United States Congress passed two bipartisan anti-trafficking bills namely; the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act and the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act. These two bills were signed into law by President Donald Trump in April this year.