La. Attorney General Warns Parents About CellPhone Porn

BATON ROUGE — Local CBS affiliate WAFB channel 9 aired a news report claiming that cellphone porn will become a $3 billion per year industry within the next four years, and the Louisiana attorney general's office wants parents to be aware of the danger to their children.

The report largely credits the increased Internet connection speeds now being offered by wireless carriers for the massive growth in the mobile erotica market, which is currently marginal in the U.S. when compared with other forms of adult entertainment.

“If you can pull up a website on your computer, chances are you can also pull it up on a cellphone,” WAFB reporter Avery Davidson said. “That means if you've given a phone to your child, they could be able pull up porn virtually anywhere.”

While adult industry professionals might question some of the facts in the report, the state’s attorney general's office is taking the growing availability of cellphone porn and the issue of children’s access to it seriously.

High Tech Crime Unit head Clay Rives advises parents to check up on their children’s cellphone history files to see if adult materials have been accessed. He did acknowledge the difficulty that many parents will face: “If the parent doesn't know how to look through the phone to find the images, you know, they're not doing any good because the child could download them and have them saved or maybe even password protected on some phones," Rives said.

“The parents have got to be involved,” said William Bailey of the High Technology Crime Investigation Association, a sentiment with which Ron South of AT&T Wireless agreed, citing the availability of service blocking and parental controls which will help parents to protect their children.

Included in AT&T’s services is instant email notification of any password changes, alerting parents to actions their children may have taken to thwart the control system.

Rives also warned parents of the small size and huge capacity of readily hidden Micro S.D. memory cards, which according to the report, “can now hold several file cabinets worth of pictures and are smaller than a dime.”

In October, the Louisiana attorney general’s office announced the convictions of several Internet predators, two of which were caught based on tips from parents concerned over their children’s online activities.

“This is a good example of how parents can get involved in this effort and help law enforcement protect their children,” Louisiana Attorney General Charles Foti said.

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