Peer-to-Peer Sharing & Child Pornography
One unforeseen consequence of the rise of the internet has been the rapid increase in child pornography distribution. Those who participate in the exploitation of children can sell, trade and share material through any number of mediums, including email, instant messaging and peer-to-peer networks.
If you’re unfamiliar with peer-to-peer, also known as P2P, you’re not alone. P2P is a relatively lesser-known method of online sharing that allows files or folders to be anonymously shared across multiple computers. All you need to do is download a P2P client application to connect to other P2P client users across the world. Since there is no central server for the files, the content is not generally reviewed or controlled, making it easy to share illicit content.
Unfortunately, a P2P user looking for legal pornography, or even cartoon shows, may find themselves accidently downloading child pornography. Entering keywords such as celebrity names or cartoon characters can lead to child pornography. Unfortunately, you can’t preview a file on P2P until it’s downloaded on your computer, making it impossible to know the exact content. Child pornography may also come hidden inside of a folder filled with thousands of regular photos and videos. Worse yet, the images that are downloaded on a computer are then automatically shared with other P2P users, which leads to the distribution of child pornography.
Even if you delete the child pornography seconds after downloading, law enforcement may recover the deleted images from your hard drive. An FBI investigation into child pornography distribution can lead them directly to you, even if the download was an accident. Anyone who believes they have mistakenly or accidently downloaded child pornography should immediately contact a lawyer for advice on rights, obligations and how to proceed.
If you have been arrested for child pornography, immediately contact Perlet, Shiner, Melchiorre & Walsh, P.A. Our West Palm Beach sex crime attorneys offer aggressive criminal defense representation.