The State of New York is still going after online gamers who happen to be convicted sex offenders, as today the Attorney General’s office announced that they have successfully purged another couple thousand offenders from realm of internet gaming.
It’s still part of Operation: Game Over, which the office announced back in April. The state enlisted the help of many high-profile gaming facilitators to kick thousands of convicted sex offenders off various networks, or in some cases cut their communication abilities.
According to New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, five move companies have joined in the efforts to purge the sex offenders from their gaming networks: Gaia Online, NCSOFT Corporation, Funcom and THQ, Inc. Since day one, big name companies like Microsoft, Apple, Blizzard Entertainment, Electronic Arts, Disney Interactive Media Group, Warner Brothers and Sony have been on board.
Operation: Game Over works thanks to another NY law called “e-STOP,” or the Electronic Securing and Targeting of Online Predators. e-STOP forces all convicted sex offenders to register all of their email addresses, screen names, and other online IDs with the state. All the state has to do is make that info available to the aforementioned companies and they can begin to kick them off their services.
More than 2,100 additional accounts of New York state sex offenders have been purged from the gaming platforms of additional companies including Gaia Online, NCSOFT Corporation, Funcom and THQ, Inc. The additional accounts include those from Sony, which had agreed to participate in the first phase of Operation: Game Over but was unable to complete the identification process by the announcement deadline.
Sony actually helped with the sex offender purge back in April, but were unable to give the AG’s office accurate numbers by press time. That’s what they’re talking about here.
These 2,100 sex offenders join 3,580 others who have been stricken from online gaming as a result of this operation.
“The Internet is the crime scene of the 21st century, and we must ensure that online video game platforms do not become a digital playground for dangerous predators. That means doing everything possible to block sex offenders from using gaming systems as a vehicle to prey on underage victims,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “I applaud the online gaming companies that have purged registered sex offenders from their networks in time for the holiday season. Together, we are making the online community a safer place for the children of New York.”