ASACP Membership — A Great Value!

Tim Henning

Since 1996, ASACP has been helping companies protect children and protect their businesses. Best Practices, a Code of Ethics, the Restricted To Adults – RTA Website Label – these are just a few ways that ASACP helps its members and sponsors. Everyone will agree that protecting children is the right thing to do, but many in the industry may have never stopped to think just how valuable an ASACP membership can be. Many may simply not be aware of the frequency that ASACP is contacted by law enforcement seeking information and cooperation with ASACP members and sponsors. It has taken several years for ASACP to build a positive relationship with these agencies and it is directly because of this effort that ASACP has been able to assist several members and sponsors with inquiries by law enforcement regarding their operations. ASACP respects the confidentiality of our members and sponsors, so we won’t name names, however I will share a few anonymous examples.

• 2257 Inspections: One sponsor told ASACP that their FBI, 2257 inspection went “extremely smoothly” once the FBI agents that were assigned to the 2257 inspection realized they were ASACP sponsors. ASACP was told that the agents attitude and demeanor “completely changed” in a positive way as soon as they became aware of their ASACP sponsorship and the owner was sure the inspection process would have been much more difficult for his company had they not been ASACP sponsors.

Everyone will agree that protecting children is the right thing to do, but many in the industry may have never stopped to think just how valuable an ASACP membership can be.

• Stopping Credit Card Abuse: ASACP has been instrumental in assisting members who were being abused by suspected child pornography operators who were billing through them. ASACP has been part of special investigations along with very senior representatives of credit card companies. We have been successful in proving that the ASACP member companies have had no direct involvement and that the abusers were wholly at fault. In addition, credit card companies and financial institutions are aware of the industry’s child protection efforts through ASACP and look for the ASACP logo. Where would the industry be without credit cards?

• Stopping CP Abuse: ASACP informs its members if an affiliate is trying to use its program to distribute CP. An ASACP sponsor, who runs a user generated content site, discovered on several occasions that suspected child pornography was being uploaded to their site. This sponsor promptly reported every incident to ASACP and we passed this information along to law enforcement. It was related to ASACP, by the sponsor, that prior to law enforcement becoming aware they were an ASACP sponsor they had been visited by law enforcement and treated poorly. One officer had said to them that they were “the reason child pornography existed”. After ASACP spoke with a representative of this law enforcement agency and let them know that this company was an ASACP sponsor, followed the ASACP code of ethics and were diligent in monitoring their sites as well as reporting all incidences of suspected child pornography, the attitude of law enforcement towards this company completely changed. No member or sponsor of ASACP has been brought up on CP charges.

These are only a few examples of occurrences where an ASACP members and sponsors have benefitted in this regard. While being an ASACP supporter is no guarantee of legal protection, it can be very helpful. In addition ASACP reviews and monitors sponsors’ and members’ sites for flagged words and content and lawyers have said that this third party monitoring of sites is good insurance. Attorneys have also said that joining ASACP as a sponsor or member is the least expensive insurance policy available. It not only shows that you care about protecting children online but also that you are doing your due diligence to run your business in a responsible manner and doing your part to keep children safe online.

To learn more about how you can become involved visit ASACP.org. It’s the right thing to do and you’ll be protecting your business by protecting children. For more information, contact tim@asacp.org.

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