Dutch Processors Can Block CP Chargers

Tod Hunter
THE HAGUE, Netherlands — The Netherlands Minister of Justice has reached agreements with credit card companies to block credit cards of web users paying for child porn. Blocking a credit card no longer requires approval by a judge.

“The new regulation allows for immediate action,” minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin said.

Hirsch Ballin said he hopes this measure will stop recent increases in the distribution of child pornography through websites in the Netherlands.

Credit card companies also have agreed to exchange information with each other to prevent blocked child porn buyers from applying for a credit card from a different credit card company.

“I agree that anything that helps to prevent the exploitation of children is a good thing as long as it does not infringe on the legitimate rights and privacy of law-abiding citizens," ASACP Director of Compliance and Technology Tim Henning told XBIZ. "I would also hope that the credit card companies are sharing this information with the appropriate law enforcement agencies. ASACP always includes credit card information, if available, when filing CP reports. In addition ASACP is active in the Financial Coalition Against Child Pornography. The Coalition works with banks, credit card companies, payment processors and ISPs to stop the flow of money that makes CP a profitable enterprise for criminals.”

According to one law-enforcement expert, child pornography is defined in the Netherlands as photographs of a child in a "sexual demeanor," and photographs of nude children would not necessarily be termed pornography in the Netherlands. The "sexual demeanor" definition of child pornography also applies only if the person or persons depicted in the photographs are children — and in the Netherlands that means under the age of 16. In the U.S. those same photographs meet the criteria of child pornography, so U.S. Customs has its hands full keeping materials that are legal in other countries out of the United States.