Google's servers have the ability to search through images uploaded online, and that led to the arrest of a California man on child porn charges.
Google’s cyber criminal investigators are faceless servers, looking across the Internet for child pornography. Each image that’s uploaded to the Web has its own unique digital fingerprint, according to CBS Sacramento.
The FBI says the investigation into Raul Gonzales began in March when Google’s hashing technology found two child porn pictures in his Picasa library. Picasa is a cloud-sharing platform for images owned by Google.
Mail Online reports that the 40-year-Gonzales was arrested and is accused of uploading more than 3,000 pornographic images online.
After finding the photos in Gonzales’ Picasa library, Google alerted the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which discovered more images uploaded by the man to Tumblr. The FBI then took over the investigation.
CBS Sacramento also noted that agents say they also found pictures of a 9-year-old who is close to the family, and that Gonzales admitted to sexually assaulting the child.
Google's servers are able to search through images uploaded online and algorithm technology can detect possible examples of child pornography. When such an image is found, it is checked by a human employee to see that the photo depicts abuse and not something more innocent, such as a child taking a bath.
Every offending picture can then be tagged with a particular digital fingerprint, which shows up if the image is reloaded online elsewhere.