January 22, 2022

Facebook Begins Using Microsoft's PhotoDNA Technology "To Disrupt Proliferation of Online Child Exploitation"

A partnership between Microsoft, Facebook, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

An announcement about the partnership and the use PhotoDNA was made on Thursday. On Friday (May 20, 2011) online discussion about issues. (Webcast on Facebook at 3pm EDST)

A Small Portion of a MS Technet Blog Post :

Today marks a significant milestone in the ongoing fight against the abuse of Internet technology for the heinous sexual victimization of the most innocent in our society. As you may have read in the New York Times, Facebook is joining Microsoft in the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s PhotoDNA program to combat child pornography. NCMEC’s program, using image-matching technology created by Microsoft Research in collaboration with Dartmouth College, gives online service providers an effective tool to take more proactive action to stop the distribution of known images of child sexual abuse online.


In partnership with NCMEC, Dartmouth College, Microsoft Research, Windows Live, Bing and many others, Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit has long worked to advance innovations and strong partnerships to combat child exploitation. In 2009, Microsoft, working with digital imaging expert Dr. Hany Farid of Dartmouth College, developed PhotoDNA and freely licensed it to NCMEC for use in a program to disrupt the online distribution of the worst known images of child pornography known to NCMEC.

Microsoft began implementing PhotoDNA technology in Bing and SkyDrive, including images posted to SkyDrive through Hotmail, in a thoughtful and gradual process in order to assess the capabilities of the technology and we are seeing strong results. PhotoDNA identified horrific images on our services that we would have never found otherwise. To date, we have evaluated more than two billion images on our services using the PhotoDNA signatures provided by NCMEC, leading to the identification of more than 1,000 matches on SkyDrive and 1,500 matches through Bing’s image search indexing.

On PhotoDNA Technology

Fast Facts: Microsoft PhotoDNA (MS Word)

Video: How MS PhotoDNA Works

Flowchart: PhotoDNA (Step-by-Step)

Video Profile: Dr. Hany Farid (From NOVA Science Now)

Web Site: Dr. Hany Farid (Images Study Group, Comp Sci Department, Dartmouth U.)
Dr. Farid’s Publications

NY Times: “Facebook’s New Way to Combat Child Pornography

Sources: Microsoft Press Pass, MicrosoftPhotoDNA.com, PBS, Dr. Farid, NY Times

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.