Stop the Traffik, a global NGO focused on human trafficking prevention, has revamped its mobile app and launched an artificial intelligence-based initiative in an effort to make it easier for people to report what they think might be trafficking-related activity.
Originally launched in 2016, the Stop App now supports eight different languages, meaning that many more people can submit suspicious activity quickly and anonymously via a range of media, including text messages, audio recordings, photography and video.
This information is analysed by Stop the Traffik experts who can immediately alert authorities if circumstances warrant.
These experts may also be assisted by IBM AI services, hosted securely on IBM Cloud, to derive information from the incident reports received. While the technology can help analysts process information more rapidly and focus on priority cases, the first analysis and decision to refer remains the responsibility of Stop the Traffic personnel.
In its latest report, the International Labour Organisation found there are about 40.3 million victims of modern slavery. In the UK alone, authorities have seen the number of incidents reported rise by 36% in a year, with the Home Office estimating a total cost to the country of between £3.3 billion to £4.3 billion.
A core goal for the organisation is to raise awareness of trafficking by creating a more accurate picture of what is happening on the ground globally. This means importing insights generated by the app which can then be analysed together with data from other sources to identify patterns and hotspots.
To achieve this, Stop the Traffik has teamed up with a range of partners from across academia, law enforcement, NGOs and the financial sector to launch the Traffik Analysis Hub (TA Hub).
Financial organisations, for example, can use this new information to identify where people are financially benefitting from this activity, and then design processes that make it more risky for them to do so.
This type of collaborative cloud-based intelligence allows all parties to securely collect and get a broader view of trafficking activity.
As more organisations and individuals share data using the Stop App, the TA Hub will become even more accurate and effective at generating targeted action to educate the public and disrupt human trafficking networks at their source.
The new Stop App is available to download on both iOS and Android.