For more information on the VGT principles of governance and how to become a member, contact us.
The Virtual Global Taskforce (VGT) members include:
Australian Federal Police
The Australian Federal Police (AFP) is a progressive and multi-faceted law enforcement organisation and is proud to be working with partner agencies to provide a holistic response to online child sexual exploitation in our local, national and global community.
Through the High Tech Crime Operations portfolio, the AFP also continues to initiate and fund a number of measures and programs to prevent child sex trafficking and tourism and prosecute child sex offenders.
Child Protection Operations (CPO), formerly known as the Online Child Sex Exploitation Team, was established in 2005. The CPO teams investigate and target offenders who seek to prey on or exploit children in both the online environment and those who may travel offshore to commit sexual offences or sexual exploitation against children. The AFP works closely with foreign law enforcement agencies prosecuting these offenders in foreign countries or, where applicable, pursues prosecutions directly using Australia’s extra-territorial laws.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police, National Child Exploitation Coordination Centre
The National Child Exploitation Coordination Centre (NCECC) is a national program of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police’s Canadian Police Centre for Missing and Exploited Children/Behavioural Science Branch (CPCMEC/BSB). The CPCMEC/BSB also comprises the RCMP’s National Missing Children Services and the National Police Support Centre for Missing Persons. The CPCMEC/BSB is Canada’s national contact point and coordination centre for police investigations involving sexually exploited children, missing children, missing adults and unidentified human remains.
The NCECC was established as the law enforcement component of Canada’s National Strategy for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation on the Internet. The NCECC is mandated to reduce the vulnerability of children to internet-facilitated sexual exploitation by: identifying victimized children; investigating and assisting in the prosecution of sexual offenders; and, strengthening the capacity of municipal, territorial, provincial, federal, and international police agencies through training and investigative support.
National Police of Colombia – Directorate of Protection and Special Services
The National Police of Colombia is an institution with 123 years of existence, utilizing a multidisciplinary approach to ensure safety and coexistence of all habitants of Colombia.
Since the 1950s, the department has a specialized body responsible for providing protection to children and adolescents that initially was called “juvenile police.” However, in 2005, the name was changed to Police for Children and Adolescents. It is attached to the Directorate of Protection and Special Services (DIPRO) which protects people with proven risk level of care.
The DIPRO has over 3,000 police officers across the country who develop various processes and procedures in prevention, surveillance and control and criminal investigation to ensure protection of 15.5 million children and adolescents in Colombia, especially on sexual exploitation in its various forms.
Since 2006, with the issuance of the Code of Childhood and Adolescence, DIPRO assumed the criminal investigation in cases where the victims are children and adolescents, as well as crimes committed by teenagers, joining forces with other institutions and organizations public and private character to fight the violation of the rights of children.
In 2011, DIPRO created a specialized crimes against children and adolescents unit, which has developed important operations against sexual predators of children and adolescents. It uses a comprehensive protection strategy that has achieved a significant reduction rate of violation of rights, especially those related to freedom, integrity and sexual education.
The strategy operates under the slogan “Protect the Present and Future of Colombians.”
Europol is the law enforcement agency of the European Union. Its aim is to help achieve a safer Europe by supporting the law enforcement agencies of European Union member states in their fight against international serious crime and terrorism.
Around 700 staff at Europol headquarters in The Hague, the Netherlands work closely with law enforcement agencies in the 27 European Union member states and in other non-EU partner states such as Australia, Canada, the USA and Norway.
As Europol officers have no direct powers of arrest, they support law enforcement colleagues by gathering, analysing and disseminating information and coordinating operations. Europol’s partners use the input to prevent, detect and investigate offences, and to track down and prosecute those who commit them. Europol experts and analysts take part in Joint Investigation Teams which help solve criminal cases on the spot in EU countries.
Europol personnel come from different kinds of law enforcement agencies, including regular police, border police, customs and security services. This multi-agency approach helps to close information gaps and minimise the space in which criminals can operate.
Some 130 Europol Liaison Officers are based at Europol headquarters. These ELOs are seconded to Europol by the EU member states and non-EU partners. They guarantee fast and effective cooperation based on personal contact and mutual trust.
INTERPOL is the world’s largest international police organization with 190 member countries working together on a daily basis to fight international crime.
Through its unique range of criminal databases and policing capabilities, INTERPOL works with law enforcement agencies around the globe to strengthen their ability to prevent crime and identify and arrest criminals to make the world a safer place.
Given the global reach of the Internet, the posting of child abuse material online constitutes an international crime and demands concerted collaboration worldwide. At INTERPOL, we work very closely with many partners to increase awareness, enforce laws and to prevent crime in this area.
Communication and collaboration between the public and private sectors is particularly vital in relation to crimes against children facilitated by the Internet, which has seen huge rise in offending in recent years. Not only can offenders distribute and access child abuse material more easily, but they can also come into direct contact with children via chatrooms and social networking sites.
INTERPOL’s International Child Sexual Exploitation (ICSE) database has so far led to the identification of more than 8,200 victims around the world, and in 2015 alone saw an average of seven children identified every day.
Through its Baseline project, INTERPOL is also working with private entities to empower industry and network administrators to recognize, report and remove child abuse material from their networks.
INTERPOL also provides support to member countries in identifying, locating and arresting travelling sex offenders. The INTERPOL Specialists Group on Crimes Against Children brings together experts, drawn from all parts of the world, to share best practice and information on the many facets of the problem, such as the apprehension of sex offenders, their treatment and management within the community.
The INTERPOL General Secretariat headquarters is located in Lyon, France, and operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. INTERPOL also has seven regional offices across the world and a representative office at the United Nations in New York and at the European Union in Brussels. Each of our 190 member countries maintains a National Central Bureau staffed by its own highly trained law enforcement officials.
Italian Postal and Communication Police Service
The Italian Postal and Communication Police Service is the specialised unit in charge of tackling high tech crimes, including child pornography via the internet. It relies on dedicated investigative powers endorsed by specific legislation, namely under-cover investigations, purchasing of illegal material, postponing of mandatory acts like search and seizure and arrests.
The National Centre for Countering On Line Child Pornography has recently been set up as a coordinating centre for domestic and international online child exploitation investigations. It also promotes preventive measures.
Dutch National Police
On Jan. 1, 2013, the Government of the Netherlands combined 25 regional police forces and its Dutch Police Services Agency into a single Dutch National Police (DNP) force.
DNP activities in the Netherlands can be divided into primary policing and specialist tasks. Primary policing includes assisting members of the public, directing traffic, enforcing the law, patrolling the streets, and simple criminal investigations. Specialist tasks include drug and human trafficking, environmental offences, fraud, investigations into arms, juvenile crime, sex offences, as well as riot squad and arrest and surveillance team operations.
In 2010, the Dutch Ministry of Security and Justice called for the restructure and improvement of the government’s approach to tackling child pornography within its police forces and Public Prosecution Office. The underlying objectives of the approach were to: intensify the fight against Dutch child abusers and the producers and commercial distributors of child pornography; to identify and rescue more victims; and to contribute to international efforts to combat child pornography and child sex tourism. The National Program Against Child Abuse Images and Child Sex Tourism has become the driving force behind the implementation of this intensified approach within the DNP.
New Zealand Police
New Zealand Police is the lead agency responsible for reducing crime and enhancing community safety. It provides policing services 24 hours a day and operates from more than 400 community-based police stations around the country. New Zealand Police operate by land, sea and air, and with more than 11,000 staff it responds to more than 600,000 emergency calls each year.
On the 16th of October 2009 the Online Child Exploitation Across New Zealand (OCEANZ) unit was launched as a specialist, dedicated response to this crime type. OCEANZ is part of a multi agency model working with the Department of Internal Affairs and New Zealand Customs Service. The New Zealand Police are using a centralised model for the initial investigation and proactive work within this crime type.
The New Zealand Police role is focused in four main areas:
- Interagency response to international investigations
- Proactive covert presence on the internet
- Victim identification
- National and international coordination of investigative referrals
Philippine National Police- Anti Cybercrime Group
The PNP activated the Anti-Cybercrime Group (ACG) as the lead national operational support unit responsible in combating cybercrime and other related crimes involving information and communication technology in the country, ensuring public safety, and advancing national security.
Since its activation, the PNP ACG had also implemented the Internet Child Protection Program, called “Project Angel Net”, designed to raise awareness and to educate parents on how to protect their children from cybercrimes, and to serve as an “online complaint center”. This project is dedicated primarily to focus on the following objectives, namely: to address internet based abusive behavioral activities through digital investigative techniques; to identify the victims of these abuses; to undertake 24/7 digital tracking, collating, collecting, archiving, investigating, and interdicting activities geared towards the identification of internet abusers; promote internet safety; and protect children on the danger of the internet.
Project Angel Net became the point of contact for the international law enforcement agencies in requesting investigative assistance and information on online child abuses. Due to our commitment, numerous investigative and operations assistance have been provided to different law enforcement agencies.
Republic of Korea
Korean National Police Agency | Cyber Bureau
The Korean National Police Agency (KNPA) is the law enforcement agency of the Republic of Korea. Its main role is to protect the nation and its people by providing the best security service. The KNPA’s major objectives are securing safe environment against crimes and accidents; assuring social stability; supporting people’s rights and interests; providing the basis for best security service; creating a healthy and active culture; and responding to changing security environment.
The KNPA’s Cyber Bureau is the Bureau-in-charge for cyber safety, cyber terror & crimes, and digital forensics. It commands and controls the entire cybercrime and forensic teams nationwide. The Director General of the Cyber Bureau is appointed by the commissioner general of the KNPA. Since its expansion from its former organization Cyber Terror Response Center (CTRC) establishment in year 2014, the Cyber Bureau has led the prevention measures on cyber arena as well as investigations of numerous cybercrime cases; including massive (denial of service) DDoS attacks from North Korea. The Cyber Bureau is also leading the digital forensics development in Korea via its strong partnership with the private sector, as well as its own programs to nurture professional researchers and examiners.
The KNPA is determined to fight child exploitation, both offline and online. It will cooperate closely with the members of VGT to identify and save children under threat, to track down the perpetrators, as well as to provide various support in technological and capacity building aspects.
United Arab Emirates
Ministry of Interior for the United Arab Emirates
The Ministry of Interior works co-operatively with other agencies and organisations in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), to create and maintain a safe society. The Ministry of Interior is committed to the preservation of peace and tranquillity, the reduction of crime and the fear of crime in the UAE and the detection of offenders. It seeks to preserve stability, the reduction of crime and the removal of a sense of fear, as well as contributing to the achievement of justice among the general public. It places the highest possible value on providing a public service of which the UAE can be proud. The vision of the police is to be operationally effective, responding to the needs of society with the highest level of integrity and training.
The Ministry of Interior of the United Arab Emirates is the lead federal agency involved in the prevention, detection and investigation of child abuse and sexual exploitation on line. Working with both local police and at a national and international level with overseas police agencies, the UAE Ministry of Interior is continually working to catch and bring to justice those responsible for the misery this crime causes. Our children are our future and we do everything possible to protect them.
The UAE is proud to be the first Arab Nation to become a member of the internationally acclaimed ‘Virtual Global Taskforce’.
National Crime Agency’s Child Exploitation and Online Protection Command
The Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Command delivers a multi-agency service dedicated to tackling the exploitation of children. That means building intelligence around the risks, tracking and bringing offenders to account either directly or with local and international police forces and working with children and parents to deliver the unique ThinkuKnow internet safety program. CEOP’s approach is truly holistic, its style is totally inclusive and its appeal is to everyone out there to work with CEOP in making every child matter, everywhere.
United States of America
Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) is the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the second largest investigative agency in the United States government. ICE’s primary mission is to promote homeland security and public safety through the criminal and civil enforcement of federal laws governing border control, customs, trade and immigration. ICE works closely with foreign law enforcement partners through more than 60 attaché offices in 47 countries.
Operation Predator is a comprehensive ICE initiative to protect children from sexual predators that brings together ICE’s broad enforcement authorities. The initiative targets internet child pornographers, international child sex tourists, foreign national sexual predators, and human smugglers and traffickers of children.
Cybercrime Coordination Unit Switzerland
The Cybercrime Coordination Unit Switzerland (CYCO) is Switzerland’s central office for re-porting illegal subject matter on the Internet. After conducting an initial analysis of the incoming report and securing the relevant data, CYCO sends the case to the appropriate law enforcement agencies in Switzerland or abroad. The CYCO also actively searches the Internet for illegal subject matter and carries out in-depth analyses of Internet crime. The unit is available to the public, the authorities and Internet service providers to answer questions on legal, criminal and technical aspects of Internet crime. It is also the contact point for its foreign counterparts.
The CYCO has three areas of responsibility: monitoring, analysis and clearing.
The CYCO is part of the Federal Criminal Police (FCP), a main division within the Federal Office of Police (fedpol), with a steering committee responsible for the strategic management of the unit. The steering committee is comprised of representatives from the Conference of Cantonal Justice and Police Directors; the Conference of Swiss Law Enforcement Agencies; the Conference of Cantonal Police Commanders; and the Federal Office of Police directorate. The Committee tasks include setting the agenda and ensuring the CYCO‘s mandate is implemented while monitoring its performance.
The CYCO is composed of network technicians, specialists for Internet protocol and infor-mation security, legal experts and criminal analysts – all of whom represent Switzerland’s major language regions.