Originally Published at Relevant Magazine
During the Coalition to End Sexual Exploitation online summit, a panel of guest speakers detailed how OnlyFans, a popular subscription service platform frequently used for pornographic content, fosters abuse and sex trafficking.
Detective Joseph Scaramucci from McLennan County Sheriff’s Office in Texas, who specializes in investigating human trafficking, spoke about how OnlyFans shows evidence of sex trafficking activity and the signs that investigators look from when working to find evidence of sex trafficking.
“The beauty of OnlyFans is that many of them are hiding behind that paywall,” Scaramucci explained. “[They] are shooting video with their victims, and they are using that video to elevate themselves because that’s what [pimps] do … which is what drives me crazy about them.”
OnlyFans biggest difference from sites similar to it is the paywall. The platform can be difficult for law enforcement to monitor the website because of the expensive paywall and the content is not easily searchable due to very few search mechanisms.
“This platform is unquestionably facilitating child sex abuse material and human trafficking of adults and minors alike, … enabling sexual abuse and exploitation,” said Linda Nealon, the director for corporate and strategic initiatives for the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. “It’s critical that law enforcement, policymakers, service providers, parents and caregivers understand how this platform works and the many associated risks.”