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H.E.A.T. Watch – Stop Human Exploitation and Trafficking

National Human Trafficking Hotline: 1(888) 373-7888
Alameda County H.E.A.T. Watch Tip Line: 1(510) 208-4959
Office of the District Attorney, Alameda County
Nancy E. O'Malley, District Attorney

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The Perfect Storm

The reason for the rising prevalence of human trafficking is due to the illusive nature of the crime, the difficulty in prosecuting such cases, the relatively light penalties for human trafficking, and the high financial incentive. As a result, human trafficking is considered the fastest growing criminal industry in the world today. [1]


Access to and reliance on computers and communication devices has increased at a high rate around the world. This has radically changed the nature and scope of traditional pimping and pandering. Geography is no longer a barrier. The internet has taken sex trafficking off the streets and online making this crime less visible and more difficult for law enforcement. Online ads allow the widespread movement of victims and offenders in response to market demand and impedes the ability of law enforcement to locate victims and traffickers, identify essential witnesses and evidence, and share important information and intelligence.


The internet opens the doors to massive profits. Large profits with little risk lures drug dealers, gangs, and organized crime from traditional pursuits like drugs into the big business of human trafficking.

[1] Human Trafficking - State of California Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General