Los Angeles, CA
(August 21, 2006) - The Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection (ASACP) has become the target of a massive 'spoof' email attack. The attack appears to be an effort to damage and discredit ASACP, which has fought internet child pornography for the past ten years.
The fake email has been received by an indeterminate number of victims, and includes both a virus-laden attachment and a threatening note. The note informs the recipient that their email address has been found on a database of child pornography paysite customers, and tells them to donate money to ASACP or face legal action.
While it is impossible to determine the source of the bogus emails, ASACP Compliance Director Tim Henning believes that it likely originates with the very criminals the organization strives to shut down.
"CP operators would like nothing better than to hinder our operations," said Henning, who has overseen ASACP's online CP reporting hotline for a decade. "The work we do helps stop them from making money from child pornography. Unfortunately, there's not much we can do to prevent these kinds of attacks."
The text of the spoof email begins: "Hi! I am abuse manager of asacp.org, the organization which fights with the child pornography expansion in Internet" and appears to have been written by someone with a poor command of written English. The email includes a link to ASACP's donation page. However, ASACP will refund any donations made under duress due to this scam.
ASACP's Executive Director Joan Irvine expressed dismay over the attack. "We've been targeted this way before," she noted. "In this case, thousands or even millions of people around the world may have encountered ASACP for the first time due to this spoof email. If so, they received a false and very negative impression of us. However, we're confident that there won't be any lasting damage. ASACP's long record of working to fight child sexual abuse speaks for itself."
Anyone who received this email is encouraged to forward it with full headers to
, with "Spoof Email" as the subject. This may assist ASACP in its investigation. Victims should also update their computer's virus definitions and scan for virus infections.
Founded in 1996, the Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection (ASACP) is a non-profit organization dedicated to eliminating child pornography from the Internet. ASACP battles child pornography through its CP reporting hotline, and by organizing the efforts of the online adult industry to combat the heinous crime of child sexual abuse.