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Yubo joins forces with NCMEC to combat the spread of sexually inappropriate photos and videos of minors online

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- Written by Yubo team

Yubo & NCMEC's Take It Down service

NEW YORK – FEB. 27, 2023 – Yubo, the live social discovery app for Gen Z, has partnered with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) to support the organization in its launch of Take It Down, a free online service to help stop child sexual exploitation and help minors remove their nudes from the internet.

Since 2018, Yubo has worked closely alongside NCMEC, the leading nonprofit dedicated to finding missing children, reducing child sexual exploitation, in an ongoing partnership to eradicate online child exploitation. With the launch of Take It Down, Yubo continues its collaboration with NCMEC to block the non-consensual use of sexually exploitative photos and videos depicting anyone under the age of 18. The service will complement  the wide range of advanced detection tools Yubo already has in place to prevent, remove, and report inappropriate imagery that is shared on the app, and help to further enhance the protection of its users.

NCMEC’s Take It Down service works by assigning a unique hash value to each nude, partially nude, or sexually explicit image or video submitted on the site. A hash value works like a digital fingerprint and allows participating online platforms to identify and block imagery that has the same hash, while maintaining privacy and anonymity. In fact, the entire process of submitting a report on Take It Down happens without the image or video being reported ever leaving the person’s device or anyone else viewing it.  

Through this partnership with NCMEC, Yubo will scan its platform to help remove, and, when necessary, report any images or videos found on Yubo that have been submitted via the service.

To help prevent victimization through the spread or use of explicit content: 

  • A minor or adult selects a sexually explicit or inappropriate image or video from their device taken before they were 18 that they want hashed and removed, and submits it to NCMEC directly through the Take It Down service.
  • Each image or video is automatically hashed into a unique digital fingerprint, which can be used to identify exact copies of that image or video. 
  • Images and videos remain on the minor’s device and are never actually uploaded to or seen by NCMEC or its Take It Down service.
  • The hash is added to a recently developed hash-sharing list maintained by NCMEC and is shared with participating platforms, such as Yubo, which have executed an agreement to receive these hashes submitted by minors.
  • Platforms may voluntarily scan their services for the hashes and may remove or report any detected hash matches to reduce the circulation of sexually explicit or exploitative content depicting minors.

Take It Down provides young people with a meaningful tool to better control how and where their images are used online, and its launch represents a key step in the mission to eradicate CSAM online,” said Yubo co-founder and CEO Sacha Lazimi. “Take It Down serves as an added layer of safety and protection for the teens and young adults socializing on Yubo. We are proud to be a partner to NCMEC in the launch of this service and to support innovation that effectively fights the non-consensual spread of content while preserving our users’ privacy.”

To further support the rollout of Take It Down, Yubo has added a new option to the app’s reporting flow to allow users to report any content circulating online of them that they deem inappropriate. If users select this option in Yubo’s in-app reporting tool, they will be directed to visit the NCMEC Take It Down site, where they can submit an anonymous report of the content they want removed.

Take It Down is currently available globally in English and Spanish. The service will continue to evolve with new capabilities, such as new languages and hash value matching of live photos or Boomerang videos, which it currently does not cover. 

The service is modeled after the United Kingdom’s StopNCII.org, which helps adults victimized by “revenge porn” and similar acts stop the circulation of sensitive media or content of them online. 

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