According to the UN, human trafficking is “the recruitment transportation, transfer, harbouring (sic) or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation.”
Human trafficking is a serious, invisible problem that exploits people of all genders and ages. Since 2003, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has collected information on over 225,000 victims of human trafficking. Some trafficking is done across borders, but trafficking within a person’s own country has increased to 58 percent of all reported victims.
While the reported victims is a large number, there are many human trafficking crimes that go undetected. Detection and data are key in the fight against human trafficking, and organizations across the world are using the Elastic Stack as a powerful tool in that battle.
In 2017 we awarded one of our first Cause Awards to IST Research for their work on the Pulse Platform, which provides real-time information collection across the internet about hard-to-reach populations. You can read more about the initiative on our blog, and watch the short video to learn more. If you’re feeling inspired, you can download Elasticsearch for free and begin developing your own tools in the fight to end human trafficking.
“In terms of observability, Elastic can help drive mean time to resolution (MTTR) down to 0,” says Daniel Palay, senior manager of customer advocacy. “But what happens when the R actually means Rescue or something of that nature? For users deploying Elastic against human trafficking and exploitation, the goal is to get to that human resolution or that rescue as quick as possible so that suffering is kept to a minimum and justice can be served."
If you're not a developer, there are still ways for you to do your part. Government action is an integral part of the conflict against human trafficking. On World Day Against Human Trafficking in Persons, the UNODC and Elastic call on you to get informed, contact your local representatives, and ask what they’re doing to combat human trafficking. You can also donate to the United Nations Voluntary Trust Fund for Victims of Human Trafficking, which has raised over seven million US dollars that has been distributed to over 60 NGO projects across the world.
Combating human trafficking also relies on sharing stories to help raise awareness and promote empathy. You can share stories on social media, whether yours or others, using the hashtags #EndHumanTrafficking and #HumanTrafficking to spread awareness.