See more: http://www.rsaconference.com/videos/alicia-kozakiewicz-children-deserve-protection
Alicia’s Internet safety activism—The Alicia Project—is grounded in this experience, which she says could happen to anyone—any parent, any child. The Alicia Project works to protect children in all 50 states. It funds, trains, supplies resources and brokers action. Alicia will detail a plan for avoiding Internet predators: creating open lines of communication, learning technology and Internet slang, and coordinating actions of families with those of law makers and law enforcers.
See more: http://www.rsaconference.com/videos/alicia-kozakiewicz-children-deserve-protection
Alicia Kozakiewicz, a survivor of human trafficking and founder of the Alicia Project, tells her story and relays how crucial it is that employees on the frontline of this crime are trained to recognize and report it. The Alicia Project proudly supports the Association of Flight Attendants’ call on Congress to mandate training introduced two years ago by DHS and the DOT to train airline personnel and equip them with the tools to accurately identify and report human trafficking. To pledge your support, go to hiddeninplanesight.org
When Alicia Kozakiewicz was just 13, she met a predator online.
"I made a really, really big mistake," the now 27-year-old told students at Namaqua Elementary School on Friday. "I met a bad guy online. Thankfully I was rescued by the police."
The FBI, to be exact. Agents tracked Kozakiewicz to another state and rescued her from her captor, a man who kidnapped her after meeting her online.
After her return to school, she was inspired to make sure other kids were much more careful online and, at age 14, began giving presentations on Internet safety.
Her presentation in Loveland on Friday was one of many she now gives internationally, and it was to kick off a program called "Think before you link" — an initiative from Intel Security and Discovery Education.
The Loveland school was the grand prize winner of $10,000 from the partnership to help students be more safe online, every day.
Parent Kristi Wray entered the local school in a sweepstakes for the grant, and on Friday representatives from the company surprised the school with the award. The students cheered, clapped and even danced in the gym after learning about the award.
Advertisement Principal Dan Cox is excited to put the money to good use to teach students ways to be safe and savvy in a world of increasing and evolving technology.
"We want to teach them the ethics as well as the understanding of what it means to be a good consumer of technology," said Cox.
The school plans to buy materials to teach students about Internet safety, to educate teachers on how to integrate those lessons into their classrooms and to offer informational nights for parents to spread safety into the home as well, according to Cox.
"We need to find a way to partner with our school community and our parents to help them, at home, educate their children on safe use of technology," said Cox.
On Friday, Kozakiewicz started those lessons with some advice for the students:
• Be careful when you choose your screen name.
• Know who you are communicating with online.
• Remember that photos can put personal information in the hands of predators by what you are wearing (school shirts) and where you are (background).
• Know that, no matter what, you can always talk with your parents.
"Do you promise to stay safe online?" Kozakiewicz asked to students, who replied with a loud and resounding, "Yes."
Now, the school has $10,000 to help.
On New Year's Day in 2002, Alicia Kozakiewicz was lured away from her family home by Scott Tyree, a man who had corresponded with the 13-year-old girl for a year in a Yahoo chat room. Over the course of several days, Kozakiewicz was held captive and assaulted by Tyree, who broadcast the attack over live streaming video. She was rescued by the FBI after an anonymous tip led agents to Tyree's Virginia home. On Thursday, Kozakiewicz (pictured above) brought her dramatic story to the 2015 RSA Security Conference in San Francisco, where she joined several other speakers for a panel entitled "Into the Woods: Protecting Our Youth from the Wolves of Cyberspace." She currently heads The Alicia Project, an advocacy group aimed at educating the public about sexual exploitation, online predators, and abduction.
"In order to keep up with my friendships, I got a screen name and began talking to my friends from school, who introduced me to their friends, and their friends, and their friends, until I was really in a realm of people I didn't know all that well, but we felt very connected because it could be traced back to that one person," Kozakiewicz told the audience.
The session was moderated by Sandra Toms, Vice President at RSA and Curator of the RSA Conference. Joining Kozakiewicz on stage was Sharon Cooper, a developmental and forensic pediatrician who evaluates and treats children who have been victims of various types of abuse; Michael Osborn, Chief of the Violent Crimes Against Children Unit for the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Lance Spitzner, Training Director for SANS Securing The Human.
The overwhelming consensus among the panelists is that effective communication by parents and other trusted adults with children about their online activities is crucial to preventing potential problems. Cooper also emphasized the fact that children typically do not have the emotional maturity necessary to cope with feelings of shame or guilt if naked photos of them wind up online, which makes them vulnerable to manipulation or extortion by predators.
Two Major Threats
The FBI has seen two significant trends in this area, Osborn said. The first is the increased use of remote wiping technology by criminals in an attempt to impede law enforcement investigations. In some instances, that is combined with increasingly sophisticated encryption technology.
The second disturbing development is the growth in sextortion cases, in which predators obtain nude photos of potential victims and then use those photos to extort more explicit photos or sexual contact. In some instances, victims supply the photos that are used for sextortion when they share nude photos of themselves, Osborn said. In other cases, the predators obtain the photos using a variety of techniques, including malware, social engineering (persuading or duping victims into sharing photos), or by lurking in chat rooms to strike up conversations with impressionable teens and tweens like Kozakiewicz.
"Grooming is a term we might hear a lot these days, but it's so, so simple," Kozakiewicz said. "All it is, is being a child's friend. And that's what he did to me. He made believe that he was my friend. And he made me think things and feel things about myself that kids don't feel every single day of their lives. He made me feel beautiful and important and special and unique. And told me what I wanted to hear versus what I needed to hear."
By Frederick Lane
See more: http://www.toptechnews.com/article/index.php?story_id=120003R570YO
Alicia Kozakiewicz RSA Conference Keynote: Into the Woods: Protecting Our Youth from the Wolves of Cyberspace
Today's headlines are crowded with stories of kids who fall victim to cybercrimes, including online bullying and predatory behavior. We can't supervise every dark corner of the Internet, so what is the answer? Stricter laws? Aggressive pursuit of offenders? Education of our kids? This keynote panel will discuss challenges and offer solutions designed to ensure the safety of our children.
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDRB) -- State Police call internet child pornography the fastest growing crime in Kentucky. Now police will have more resources as they try to hit “delete” on the problem.
WDRB watched as a forensic investigator performed an autopsy - on a laptop. If there are illegal images of child porn on its hard drive, he'll find them.
“We're looking for evidence, just in a different kind of way,” said Lt. Jeremy Murrell, commander of the Kentucky State Police Electronic Crimes Unit.
Nine people, including four detectives, make up the Internet Crimes Against Children or ICAC unit. They team with other agencies across the state to track down child predators.
“We're working the file sharing networks, called peer to peer, and we're looking for people that are advertising known child exploitative images to download,” said Murrell.
The unit is paid for primarily with federal funds, but will soon get an infusion of state dollars.
“We'd like to grow our task force. We'd like to get more people involved,” Murrell said.
The General Assembly passed, and the governor has now signed HB 427, Alicia's Law; named after Alicia Kozakiewicz.
She was abducted by an Internet stalker, at age 13, bound, raped and tortured.
“But I was miraculously rescued because of the FBI; because they had the funding and the resources to find and rescue me,” Kozakiewicz told WDRB in February before successfully testifying in front of a House committee.
The law adds a $10 fine to every criminal conviction in Kentucky, with the money going to ICAC.
Supporters say it could amount to $3 million a year. It means more personnel, more training and more equipment.
“To combat this problem, we need the best computers there are. And those aren't cheap,” said Murrell.
The unit has made 20 arrests so far this year, already more than last year.
The increased funding sends a clear message that Kentucky is serious about internet crimes involving children.
“Every arrest we make, in my opinion, rescues a child,” said Murrell.
This is one issue where Kentucky is on the cutting edge: it's just the ninth state to adopt Alicia's Law.
Copyright 2015 WDRB News. All rights reserved
From the PROTECT newswire:
Victory in Kentucky!
Last night, after Representative John Tilley's legislation to fund Kentucky's ICAC Task Force had already worked its way through the State Senate, it came back to the House where it received unanimous support.
After weeks of debate, wrangling over where funding will come from, including a visit from Alicia Kozakiewicz herself, this egislation is finally headed to Governor Steve Beshear's desk for his signature.
This bill was incredibly critical in our efforts to rescue and protect Kentucky's children. Nationwide, law enforcement knows where hundreds of thousands of criminals are trafficking in images and video of children being raped and abused. Over half of these predators are also hands-on offenders, with local child victims. Yet, fewer than two percent of these known leads are being investigated, due to lack of resources.
Our victory in Kentucky, supported by our generous donors, ensures more arrests and child rescues, year after year.
PROTECT gives great thanks to those that helped shepherd this bill through the Kentucky legislature. We know that, without their leadership, Kentucky couldn't have joined other states in the battle to combat child exploitation:
Rep. John Tilley
Sen. Whitney Westerfield
House Speaker Greg Stumbo
Senate President Steven Stivers
Majority Caucus Leader Sannie Overly
Senate Majority Leader Senate Damon Thayer
Rep. Jody Richards
Kentucky State Police Commissioner Rodney Brewer
Members of the Kentucky Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force
Rep. Tilley's bill increases money flowing into the Kentucky State Police's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. The additional money would come from a $10 court fee on all felonies and misdemeanors.
The vote was unanimous, but behind the scenes, it's always a fight to get PROTECT bills the vote they deserve. Special thanks go to our Kentucky champions, Kiki Courtelis and Amy Towles.
As always, we appreciate your support. Without your help, PROTECT wouldn't be able to do this kind of work across the country and in Washington, D.C.
~ The Staff and Volunteers at PROTECT
Victim Testifies in Support of Bill that would fund Kentucky Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force
A young, shy and insecure 13-year-old Alicia Kozakiewicz met another teenager in a chat room, or so she thought. When she stepped out during a holiday dinner to meet her friend, he took her across state lines from Pittsburgh, Pa., to Virginia where she was kept in a basement dungeon and was raped live on an Internet video stream.
Kozakiewicz testified before the House Standing Committee On Judiciary in support of HB 427, a bill sponsored by Rep. John Tilley, D-Hopkinsville, and House Majority Caucus Chair Sannie Overly, D-Paris, which creates a dedicated revenue stream funding Kentucky State Police’s training, salaries and equipment in the Kentucky Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force in order to address the overwhelming flood of child pornography in the state.
“I never went outside alone after dark. I was and am still scared of the dark. And yet on Jan. 1, 2002 between dinner and dessert during a holiday meal, I walk out the door to meet somebody who I thought was my friend,” Kozakiewicz said.
“He groomed me quite simply. He acted like he was someone my age … grooming is as simple as befriending a child by telling them what they want to hear instead of what they need to hear.”
After kidnapping her, Scott Tyree, a 38-year-old computer programmer in Virginia, took Kozakiewicz to his home, put a dog collar on her and chained her to the floor.
Not easy to tell
“It’s never been easy to tell my story, I’ve been telling it for 10 years,” Kozakiewicz said. “I was raped. I was beaten. I was tortured and the degradation was shared live to an audience on streaming video.
“I was a little 90-pound girl who cried for my mommy and my daddy and prayed I would be rescued. A viewer was able to recognize the girl in that horrendous video as a girl from a missing poster.”
The viewer contacted FBI. When a task force similar to the KSP’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force rescued her, they cut the collar from her neck and Kozakiewicz said she survived for a second chance and has advocated for “Alicia’s Law” across the nation.
Kentucky would join eight other states that have adopted “Alicia’s Law” dedicating revenue for law enforcement resources to combat Internet crimes against children. A situation Kentucky State Police Commissioner Rodney Brewer said continues to grow at an almost unmanageable rate.
“We’ve got a problem in Kentucky and the problem is the alarming statistics,” Brewer. “We have many tracking databases ... one that was randomly pulled (for sampling) showed that we have nearly 10,000 child pornography files that were downloaded last year in Kentucky alone.
“More alarming during a 24-hour period that we randomly sampled just this week, we had over 2,600 child pornography files that were made available for sharing here in Kentucky.”
Brewer said the bill’s dedicated stream from fees attached to misdemeanor and felonies convictions in Kentucky’s district and circuit courts would help Kentucky State Police’s task force keep up with training, the workload, the equipment and the technology involved in prosecution.
The bill passed favorably from the committee and was put on the consent agenda slating it for a vote on the House floor.
By: Brad Bowman, The State Journal
Read full article: http://state-journal.com/local%20news/2015/02/24/victim-testifies-in-support-of-bill-that-would-fund-kentucky-internet-crimes-against
KIMT News 3 – When you hear the term, child exploitation, the severity of the crimes that term covers may not hit you right away. But the crimes are serious, everything from child pornography, to sexual abuse, abductions, and sex trafficking.
26-year-old Alicia Kozakiewicz knows the reality of that term. At 13-years-old, she was abducted by a man she had met on an internet chat room. It was 2001, and the internet was picking up speed, and entering more homes across the country.
“It felt like somewhere I could be safe, where I could speak up a little bit more even though it wasn’t speaking I was typing, but where I could voice my opinion more.” Alicia says her friends started logging on more, and finally, she broke down, and got a screen name as well.
Along the way, she met 38-year-old Scott Tyree. Initially though, she didn’t know who he really was. “I thought it was somebody around my own age and I didn’t think anything else. Now people ask ‘How could you not know?’ But I was a 13-year-old kid and 13-year-old kids think they know everything.” After 8 months of grooming her, on January 1st 2002, Tyree drove from his home in Virginia to Alicia’s home, in Pittsburgh. She said between dinner and dessert, she slipped out the front door of her home, into the bitter cold January night, going against everything she would normally do.
“My intuition said ‘Alicia you need to go home this is really dangerous, what are you doing?’ And I went to turn around and I heard my name being called. And the next thing I knew I was in the car and this man was squeezing my hand so tightly and was barking commands at me. ‘Be good. Be quiet. I have the truck cleaned out for you.’ He drove me about five hours from my Pittsburgh home to his house in Virginia where I was held captive in his basement dungeon.”
For the next four days, Alicia lived a nightmare. Tyree kept her locked up, and raped, beat, tortured and starved her. “Now there’s no words to describe. ‘Well how does it make you feel?’ There’s no words to describe the pain, and the loss of self and hopelessness that you can feel in that situation.”
On the fourth day, Tyree told her they would be taking a ride later and left for work.
Little did Alicia know, the FBI was at work, looking for her. Agents finally found Alicia chained up in her abductor’s bedroom. “All these agents rushed in and they cut the collar from around my neck and they set me free and gave me a second chance at life.”
The FBI had received a tip from a man in Florida. That man had met Tyree online, in an internet chatroom, and had witnessed Alicia’s abuse over live streaming video. He had heard about a missing girl from Pittsburgh, and made the connection. Alicia does not consider him a hero, but believes the tip he gave was because he didn’t want to be considered an accomplice in the crime.
“It’s amazing, one monster coming forward about another. I’m so lucky. But to think that there are so many children right this second, as we are speaking, as people are watching us, who are being raped or being tortured or being degraded.”
Alicia is an advocate now, and shares her story around the nation. She speaks to kids, teens, parents and has even testified before Congress. Her story is one she knows holds power, and comes with a warning. “I wasn’t torn from the silver screen of a horror film or ripped from the pages of a scary novel. This happens to me, it happened in real life, and it’s happening to so many kids right now.”
Alicia has also teamed up with PROTECT, a non-profit organization that’s dedicated to the protection of children from abuse, exploitation, and neglect. They are working to pass “Alicia’s Law” in all 50 states. Alicia explains why it’s so important to her. “The Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force is making a huge difference when they can. Their funding and resources are so limited. It’s terrifying to think, and heartbreaking to think of the images and videos that they see every day, the child pornography. They look at this every day, and then they go home to their families with the screams of children echoing in their heads. They know where these kids are, but they can’t go get them because they don’t have the funding. They don’t have the resources, they don’t have boots on the ground. And that’s what Alicia’s Law provides.”
The law would direct state specific funding to the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces around the country. According to her website www.aliciaproject.org the money would also be used to make sure there are child rescue teams in place, and the funds would be safe from cuts to the general budget. Alicia’s Law is in place in Virginia, Texas, Arizona, Hawaii and Idaho, and similar legislation was passed in California and Tennessee as well.
While her story can be hard to share at times, Alicia says she will continue to push for internet and child safety measures, more awareness about what’s happening online, and will advocate for those children who are missing.
“I continue to tell my story, even though it’s very painful because it is still to happening to others. And if I can save just one life. If I can save one person, or one family from going through what my family did, then it’s entirely worth it.”
For more information about Alicia’s Law, and resources to talk to your kids about internet dangers, check out these sites:
By: Sarah Danik, KIMT
PHOENIX (KSAZ) - A bill is quickly making its way through the Legislature; it would provide more resources to help catch child predators lurking online.
The bill has a lot of support with Arizona lawmakers; it would allocate $4.5 million to the Internet Crimes Against Children task force.
It's called Alicia's Law, named after a young girl who was just 12-years-old when she was abducted and abused by a man she met online.
"We're talking about real children, real victims, real people... when I was 12-years-old I was groomed and lured from my home by a predator who abducted me and held me captive in his basement dungeon," said Alicia Kozakiewicz.
Kozakiewicz is the namesake of Alicia's Law which is quickly making its way through the legislature. She is from back east and met a man on a Yahoo! chatroom. After talking for a few weeks the man lured her out of her house. She was held for four days in his house where she was raped, beaten, and tortured countless times.
Pictures and videos of the crime were posted online by her captor.
"Somebody had seen this video, and they were able to recognize this little girl on the missing poster as the girl in the video and they contacted law enforcement," she said.
Fortunately Alicia was saved, but many children are not. That is why Representative Paul Boyer introduced this bill to increase funding for the task force.
"The bill will allow us $4.5 million in lottery money to help us protect and rescue children," said Rep. Paul Boyer.
The bill is getting the backing of some heavy-hitting politicians in Arizona.
"If we want to attack that evil in Arizona, we need to do more," said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery.
"What does it say about us as a society if we're not willing to commit the resources to help law enforcement help prosecutors prosecute those who commit unspeakable crimes," said Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich.
"I was given a second chance at life, and with that second chance at life I'm trying to save other children," said Kozakiewicz.
According to Rep. Boyer, there are only four investigators for the ICAC task force here in Arizona. With the additional funding, if the bill passes they would be able to hire up to 35 full-time investigators.