08/16/2019 San Francisco, California, United States
HackerEarth, a leader in developer assessment software and ERASE Child Trafficking, an organization that supports law enforcement through human trafficking investigations training, together announce the launch of the “Missing Hackathon”. The hackathon is aimed at developing technological solutions to tackle the issues around child abduction and trafficking. According to the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) Missing Person File, there are 29,758 active cases of missing children in the US as of December 31, 2018. Any innovation in this field would have a global impact.
Child trafficking has become the second-largest and fastest-growing crime in the world. According to The International Labor Organization, there are 40.3 million victims of human trafficking globally, with hundreds of thousands in the United States. Women and girls are disproportionately affected by modern slavery, accounting almost 29 million, or 71 percent of the overall total.
ERASE trains law enforcement officers on identifying and recovering victims, investigating human trafficking crimes and building prosecutable cases. Currently, only 1-2% of trafficking victims are recovered. The Missing Hackathon will help find new solutions to aid such investigations and identify victims faster, using technology.
Sachin Gupta, CEO and Co-Founder, HackerEarth
“As a company, it is our responsibility to do our bit for society. Apart from our core business of developer assessments, we organize such hackathons every year where we partner with non-profits to aid them in their line of work. Child trafficking is a major problem faced in the US, and we hope to find solutions that can be used by law enforcement to track missing kids and identify victims hastily.”
Following are the issues which will be tackled in the hackathon:
- Facial Recognition System – To build a system to help law enforcement agencies identify missing persons across the globe
- Decentralized Directory of Missing Persons – Create a directory to help law enforcement agencies match missing person information with identified possible victims while maintaining privacy and security of data.
- Search Mapping – Create an application that utilizes a victim’s digital footprint to help narrow down their location
- Open Innovation – An open-ended theme to build any solutions that can help on similar lines
Sandra Sparks, Executive Director, ERASE Child Trafficking
“Technology is a double-edged sword. Traffickers use technology to entangle more people into their web, increasing the number of potential victims. We need to stay ahead of the predators and protect our children. New technology for law enforcement would turn the tables and use technology for good. Empowering law enforcement with more advanced tools increases the chances of finding a trafficked individual. Everyone has a role in combatting human trafficking, the Hackathon with Hackerearth allows Developers to play a significant role in combatting child trafficking.”
HackerEarth has organized many such hackathons in partnership with nonprofits and advocacy groups to crowdsource solutions for various issues faced by people all around the globe. Prior to the Missing Hackathon, they have also organized Stop the Bleed hackathon, Child Abuse Prevention hackathon and Blue Planet hackathon.
HackerEarth’s expertise in conducting online hackathons has led to the company’s commitment towards social causes. Developers create applications for organizations that seek technological tools and in a few cases, go on to work with the organization to implement their solutions. Developers can also join the HackerEarth developer community to stay updated on the latest trends in their field, learn to code, take practice tests for interviews and assess themselves against other developers. Currently, the community has 2.9 million developers, including 300,000 from the US.
The Missing Hackathon started on July 7th, 2019 and will end on August 25th, 2019. Developers from any country can participate as it is an online challenge. The winning team will be given a reward of USD $700 and an opportunity to develop their solution further. Currently, 1175 developers have registered for the hackathon.