Chatbot sex online

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The National Human Trafficking Hotline received more than 5,000 reports of sex trafficking in 2016, but most cases are believed to go unreported.Project Intercept’s lead partner, Seattle Against Slavery, is working with counterparts in 21 other U. cities, including Boston and Houston, to deploy the bot more widely.Roe-Sepowitz says that while education and deterrence make sense, it’s been hard to prove what tactics are most effective.When detectives in Phoenix used fake ads to surprise people looking to buy sex, nearly half of callers who were contacted by a cop later called another spoof ad.The chatbot, tested recently in Seattle, Atlanta, and Washington, lurks behind fake online ads for sex posted by nonprofits working to combat human trafficking, and responds to text messages sent to the number listed.

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Limitations of the software have produced mixed results for businesses, but the deter-o-bot has proven good enough at its job.“It helps that the guys who are buying sex are not paying much attention to the human being on the other end of the phone,” says Beiser, of Seattle Against Slavery.So far, the chatbot has exchanged 14,000 messages with nearly 1,000 people who responded to the planted ads.In about half those cases it heard enough to deliver a warning message.“If law enforcement perform stings in a city they might get a few dozen people, but we know there have to be thousands and thousands of guys out there looking to buy sex,” says Robert Beiser, executive director of Seattle Against Slavery.It harvests phone numbers from real online sex ads, and automatically sends messages to sex workers offering support or assistance getting out of the trade.Responses are routed to an experienced nonprofit employee or volunteer.

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