Five subreddit bans were explicitly for content that violated Reddit’s rules against sexually suggestive content that includes minors

In a statement, a Reddit spokesperson said: “Our sitewide policies explicitly prohibit any sexual or suggestive content involving minors or someone who appears to be a minor. This includes child sexual abuse imagery and any other content that sexualizes minors. Our dedicated Safety teams use a combination of automated tooling and human review to detect and action this content across the platform. We regularly ban communities for engaging in the behavior in question, and we will continue to review and action violating subreddits, users, and content.”

The court filings reviewed illustrate how people on Wickr openly trade child sexual abuse material once connected with groups or other individuals on the app

A search for “Wickr” on Tumblr domains revealed blogs where people advertise their Wickr handles alongside sexually explicit adult images and non-explicit images that appear to be of teenagers, as well as drugs that appear to how to delete sudy be for sale. Tumblr deleted several blogs flagged to the company by NBC News after a request for comment. In a statement, a Tumblr representative said, “Child sexual abuse and exploitation, including sexually suggestive content involving a minor, is not allowed on Tumblr. We ask anyone coming across such content to please report it to us so that our Trust & Safety team can review it and take action in accordance with our Community Guidelines. Additionally, any child sexual abuse material we discover is immediately removed and reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.” The Tumblr representative said the company uses PhotoDNA, a photo detection software created by Microsoft and licensed to platforms for the sole purpose of combating child abuse.

On Twitter, a search for “Wickr” yielded posts with Wickr usernames and the hashtags “teen,” “perv” and “nolimits.” One user appeared to be selling child sexual abuse material, writing “Sixteen is a cool number” and “Sells to anyone” alongside a Wickr handle and the acronyms “map” and “aam,” which stand for minor-attracted-person and adult-attracted-minor respectively. Other posts advertise various drugs for sale.

On Twitter, a search for “Wickr” yielded posts with Wickr usernames and the hashtags “teen,” “perv” and “nolimits.” Obtained by NBC News via Twitter

Twitter says it suspended several accounts flagged to the company while reporting this article. In a statement, Twitter spokesperson Trenton Kennedy said, “Twitter has a zero-tolerance policy for child sexual exploitation content. We aggressively fight online child sexual abuse and have heavily invested in technology and tools to enforce our policy. We have rules against non-consensual nudity and take strong enforcement action against this content.”

The court cases

Even when law enforcement has gathered large amounts of evidence, Wickr’s cooperation appears to be minimal, according to the company’s responses to the court filings and its own web page that contains information about how it responds to legal requests.

A national law enforcement officer who routinely works on child sex abuse investigations, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to protect his safety, said that he’s given up trying to work with Wickr to secure evidence of child sex abuse happening on the platform.

“It’s not worth the effort of going through the process,” he said. “It’s end-to-end encrypted. So you get no content.”

To request information from Wickr, law enforcement must secure a legal order such as a search warrant, subpoena or court order, according to the company’s website. Once one is submitted, Wickr says, it’s the company’s policy to notify a user that their information has been the subject of an information request. The company warns on its website that it is not able to provide information from encrypted chats, and only has access to data such as the date an account was created, the type of device on which such an account was used, the date of its last use, the total number of sent and received messages, avatar images and the Wickr version number.