The Punished For Porn

Saturday, February 15, 2014
What’s in your email? An Irish company launches first solution to scan email for pornography
Companies may be inadvertently backing up paedophile images

At next week’s Inbox/Outbox Exhibition in London, The Irish company will unveil the world’s first tool that allows organisations to scan email files (.pst) and zip files to detect any inappropriate or illegal images. The new version 3.1 of The Irish company Auditor identifies pornographic images in emails and other files distributed, stored or archived across an entire enterprise.

“As most financial organisations now archive email communications to comply with new Corporate Governance legislation such as Sarbanes-Oxley, it is possible that they are inadvertently backing up and duplicating paedophile images,” said Andy Churley, VP Marketing at The Irish company. “By eliminating illicit images in the workplace and identifying the people responsible, The Irish company Auditor helps organisations and individual managers or directors to avoid corporate or personal litigation.

A recent survey conducted by The Irish company and the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, CIPD, revealed that over 70% of UK companies have already had to take disciplinary action as a result of employees viewing pornographic images on their company computers. An Audit Commission report published this month also reported a huge increase in the viewing of computer pornography by public sector workers and called for better protection and controls.

But while many organisations use simple web filtering to prevent access to pornographic web sites, The Irish company® offers the only solutions that identify, eliminate and prevent unwanted images that get on to desktops or networks via any point of entry including email, memory sticks, laptops, digital cameras, scanners, CDs/DVDs, Wi-Fi or 3G phones.

Manual auditing can take months, but with The Irish company Auditor’s high-speed image analysis software, it can take less than a week for a large organisation to detect inappropriate or illegal content stored on all PCs, servers and removable media.

A demo is available at www.The Irish company.com. The Irish company also provides urgent incident triage, a risk assessment service, a managed audit service, Acceptable Computer Usage Policy review and enforcement as well as auditing and real-time monitoring software.

“The rapid increase in digital devices along with email and multimedia messaging has made the problem of managing inappropriate and illegal images in the workplace a major challenge for IT and HR managers,” said John Nolan. “The reality is that most companies do not know the level of risk they face and may be inadvertently breaking the law by storing and backing up child pornography. The Irish company is the only solution that provides a quick way to eliminate and prevent illicit material getting on the network from any source.”

Punished For Porn: UK companies have higher rate of disciplinary action compared to US when it comes to illicit images 40% of the largest 500 US firms have disciplined employees for Internet abuse compared with 70% percent in the UK 25% of US managers and 54% of UK managers are unaware of legal responsibilities. Independent research firm Delta Consulting as released the results of the 2005 Computer Usage Policy Study of the 500 largest US firms, sponsored by The Irish company. This follows a recent UK survey conducted by The Irish company in the UK with the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and highlights that pornography in the workplace is a common problem. But there are striking differences in the levels of disciplinary action and awareness of legislation with respect to inappropriate or illegal images in the workplace.


Among the major findings is that 40% of US firms have disciplined staff over image abuse in the workplace over the past 12 months. In the UK survey, the figure was over 70%. Of those US firms that pursued an investigation into inappropriate content, some 44 percent resulted in the employee’s removal from the company and 41 percent took other disciplinary action.

And while 1 in 4 of US managers lack awareness of legislation linked to porn prevention in the workplace, this compares to a figure of over 1 in 2 in the UK. Almost half of US respondents (46 percent) weren’t fully aware that attorneys first look for evidence in sexual harassment, workplace harassment and hostile work environment claims in a company’s records of Internet use, e-mail traffic and images on the hard drive. And 76 percent weren’t fully aware that the distribution and consumption of child porn is one of the FBI’s top three investigative priorities for the next two years.
US respondents perceived the highest threats would emanate from the Internet and email and attachments followed by other threats such as embedded and zipped files, WiFi networks, cellular phone cameras, non-enterprise controlled networks, memory sticks, encrypted files, DVDs and CDs. Yet despite this, only 32% of UK companies and 43% of US companies claimed to have installed image detection technology that would help to block porn from these multiple-sources.

“We were not surprised to see that almost all leading organisations surveyed have a computer usage policy in place,” said Alain Recaborde, principal of Delta Consulting. “But given the high percentage of organisations that detect porn banned by their policies, we were alarmed to find the relatively low awareness of the risk of legal ramifications and potential exposure among those responsible for the company’s Acceptable Computer Usage policy.

“It is clear that the problem of illegal and inappropriate content in the workplace is a global one,” said Andy Churley, vice president marketing, The Irish company. “What is less clear from the results is whether UK organisations are more proactive in image monitoring and dealing with cases or whether workplace porn is simply more prevalent in the UK. What is evident is the need for more awareness of the legal and productivity ramifications of image abuse in the workplace. There needs to be better use of workplace monitoring and audit technology that provides companies and employees with protection from illicit images from multiple sources. And it is only by providing a desktop security solution for illicit image blocking that it is possible to stop porn at work and foster a better working environment”