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Utah company uses AI to catch online predators | #childpredator | #kidsaftey | #childsaftey


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OREM — A Utah company is using artificial intelligence to help catch online predators on gaming devices. The company is using AI to eavesdrop on online game chats to spot bullying, threats and even strangers preying on kids.

The games that may seem the most innocent can also attract some of the most unsavory characters.

“Don’t get me wrong, they’re actually really creative and they’re fun for the children,” Sean Bair, CEO of GameSafe, said. “But unfortunately, the predators use those games to get at kids.”

Sean Bair is the CEO of GameSafe, a Utah company that is using Artificial Intelligence to help catch online predators on gaming devices.
Sean Bair is the CEO of GameSafe, a Utah company that is using Artificial Intelligence to help catch online predators on gaming devices. (Photo: Mike Anderson, KSL-TV)

Bair and others launched GameSafe a couple of months ago. It uses artificial intelligence to monitor those chats.

The company’s founder David Everitt Jr. got the idea after one of his own kids received some inappropriate chats.

“There’s not protections. There’s no verifications of age. It’s you join, and you’re in there and you can see everything else,” Bair said.

Bair said within minutes of starting a Roblox game, he was invited to a room where chats and other things happening were not appropriate for kids.

“It is unbelievable, what is happening in these games,” Bair said.

A Utah company is using artificial intelligence to help catch online predators on gaming devices.
A Utah company is using artificial intelligence to help catch online predators on gaming devices. (Photo: Mike Anderson, KSL-TV)

“He partnered with me. I’ve got a background in public safety, sexual assault investigator and so we’re able to work together to figure out how best to protect kids in these games,” Bair said.

Bair is a former police officer who is now working to prevent crimes against children. The GameSafe app works on PC, Apple and android devices, and it’s always watching. Parents get alerts from the AI when things look suspicious.

“It could also be hate speech. It could be self-harm, it could be drug use,” Bair said.

A Utah company is using artificial intelligence to help catch online predators on gaming devices.
A Utah company is using artificial intelligence to help catch online predators on gaming devices. (Photo: Mike Anderson, KSL-TV)

The AI also recognizes speech patterns, when predators might be asking about where kids live or play, or even asking them to move the chat to other apps, like Snapchat and Discord.

Bair said they’re constantly working to keep the AI updated.

“Because a lot of the vulgarity is not just using typical characters, it’s actually using dollar signs and emojis and other things that are problematic,” Bair said.

While this former cop would eventually like to use AI to help law enforcement, the focus right now is on helping parents.

“I mean the whole point is to really stop it before it causes harm,” Bair said.

GameSafe costs about $5 a month to monitor chats in Roblox and Minecraft. The company will soon add Fortnite to that list. Bair says it will be another $5 for the added feature.

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Mike Anderson

Mike Anderson often doubles as his own photographer, shooting and editing most of his stories. He came to KSL in April 2011 after working for several years at various broadcast news outlets.

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