Human Traffic Watch

$185,000 Microsoft grant given for research in human trafficking

In Awareness, Human Trafficking on September 27, 2012 at 9:12 am

Research funded by Microsoft is now underway to identify technology’s role in sex trafficking.

This research will help provide a framework for understanding how technology affects human trafficking in the United States, specifically regarding the commercial and sexual exploitation of children.

The $185,000 grant, awarded by Microsoft Research and the Microsoft Digital Crimes Unit in March, will fund research that aims to provide intelligence and data concerning the advertising and selling of human trafficking victims, and the searching for and purchasing of victims by “johns” (those who buy victims).

Most projects funded by the grant will be completed by summer of 2013. According to Microsoft Research’s official website, some questions already being considered include, “How do johns search for their victims?,” “How are pimps communicating with johns?,” and “How is an arrangement to meet made during the process of buying and selling a victim?”

The aim of this grant is to help fund scholarly inquiry that can provide empirical research and evidence for Internet-related sex trafficking cases, such as the current high profile Village Voice Media scandal concerning the buying and selling of victims through Backpage.com.

Source: Daily Titan

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