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Child Pornography Reporting Requirements

Child Pornography Reporting Requirements for Computer Technicians and Information Technology Workers

As of Nov. 19, 2014

At least 12 states--Alaska, Arkansas, California, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota and Texas--have enacted laws requiring computer technicians or information technology workers to report child pornography if they encounter it in the scope of their work. In addition, Michigan law provides confidentiality and immunity from civil liability for computer technicians who report child pornography encountered in the scope of their work. The laws don't require technicians or service providers to search for the illegal material, only to report it if they find it. Similar laws in some states apply to film developers who encounter child pornography on the job. (See statutory excerpts below.)

Critics charge that this type of law unfairly transfers law enforcement duties to individuals who may not be qualified to handle evidence or determine what constitutes child pornography. Supporters say reporting mandates for photo labs have proven effective, and that similar laws for IT workers will help combat child pornography on the Internet.

PLEASE NOTE:  The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) serves state legislators and their staff. This site provides comparative information only and should not be construed as legal advice. NCSL cannot provide assistance with individual cases. 

Statute Citations

Alaska
Alaska Stat. § 47.17.023

Arkansas
Ark. Code § 5-27-604.
 
California
Calif. Penal Code 11165.7
 
Illinois
325 ILCS 5/4.5
720 ILCS 5/11-20.2
 
Michigan
Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.145c (9).
 
Missouri
Mo. Rev. Stat. § 568.110 (until 12/31/2016) / Mo. Rev. Stat. § 573.215 (beginning 1/1/17)
 
North Carolina
N.C. Gen. Stat. § 66-67.4.

Oklahoma
Okla. Stat. tit. 21 § 1021.4 

Oregon
Ore. Rev. Stat 163.693

South Carolina
S.C. Code, § 16-3-850.

South Dakota
S.D. Codified Laws § 22-24A-18
 
Texas
Texas Bus. & Comm. Code, § 109.001 to 109.003
 

PLEASE NOTE:  The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) serves state legislators and their staff. This site provides comparative information only and should not be construed as legal advice. NCSL cannot provide assistance with individual cases.

NCSL contact for additional information: Pam Greenberg, NCSL Denver Office.

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