Europol highlights Internet/trafficking link

Last week, Europol held a forum on human trafficking to spotlight specific areas that law enforcement and Europol should give greater attention.

In the 2013 EU Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment (SOCTA), the internet and e-commerce were identified as "key crime enablers," and Europol highlighted trafficking in human beings (THB) as an area that is particularly vulnerable to internet exploitation.

In a press release, Europol called the link between the use of the Internet, cybercrime and THB criminal activities as “now stronger than ever before, as human trafficking networks increasingly exploit ‘online market places' to their benefit, for example in the recruitment of victims.”

The growing use of the internet by organised crime groups has become a “serious challenge” for law enforcement agencies, making it necessary to “synchronise ‘traditional' THB investigations and specialised cybercrime investigations," says Rob Wainwright, Director of Europol.