AccessData continues to support the Human Exploitation Rescue Operative (HERO) Child Rescue Corps program. This is a special program created by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) U.S. Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) that will provide training and internship opportunities for wounded, ill or injured U.S. military veterans. The program provides 10 intense weeks of child exploitation and computer forensic training. Upon completion of their training, they get 10 months of on-the-job training while assisting HSI special agents.
It is reported that 9 million cases of child abuse and exploitation take place every year in the U.S.¹ The U.S. Child Exploitation Investigations Unit (CEIU), a division of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), has a primary focus of putting an end to child exploitation. The most common first encounter of a predator with an Internet-initiated sex crimes victim took place in an online chat room (76%).² Therefore, it’s necessary that the CEIU uses cutting-edge technology and investigative techniques to track down offenders and bring them to justice. With efforts toward eradicating child exploitation, AccessData proudly provides Forensic Toolkit® (FTK®) training and certification (AccessData Certified Examiner® [ACE®]) at a reduced cost. These classes are conducted at the HSI Cyber Crime Center facility in Fairfax, Virginia.
Jim Martin, one of our senior instructors, is a former special agent with HSI who conducted computer forensic examination for many years. He looks forward to the opportunity to continue our support of the HERO program as he feels that this exemplifies how we as a company can make a small contribution to veterans’ transition into civilian life. “The ladies and gentlemen in these classes have overcome tremendous personal challenges to become candidates for these classes,” said Jim. “They have a strong desire to continue serving their country. It’s a rewarding class to teach because each student is extremely motivated and eager to learn. Because of their background and training, they quickly learn how to “adapt and overcome” the challenges of computer forensics. It’s an honor to teach this class.”
In addition to the training, AccessData also provides all graduates with a complimentary one-year license of FTK to use while assisting the HSI special agents. At the completion of their internship, the veterans will have both classroom knowledge and real-world experience in computer forensics and child exploitation investigations. It’s extremely important to obtain these skills due to the fact that we are encountering this issue with great frequency, and therefore, there is a vast need to dedicate a significant number of law enforcement resources to combat the child exploitation issue. Having in-depth computer forensics knowledge is a key weapon in proactively detecting abusive material and working efficiently to take action.
AccessData is proud to work hand-in-hand with the HERO program to ensure veterans’ needs are met and that they are able to train the next generation of investigators. We look forward to our continued relationship with ICE and the HERO program to create innovative solutions to help disrupt this criminal behavior.
Please view the video below to learn more about this important program that is equipping our wounded and injured veterans for work in a new battlefield on the Internet.
- Legal Dictionary, “Child Exploitation.” https://legaldictionary.net/child-exploitation/
- Wolak, Janis, David Finkelhor, Kimberly J. Mitchell, and Michele L. Ybarra, “Online ‘Predators’ and Their Victims: Myths, Realities, and Implications for Prevention and Treatment.” American Psychologist, 2008, 63:111–128. (http://www.unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/Am%20Psy%202-08.pdf) (December 21, 2011)