International Centre For Missing & Exploited Children (ICMEC) Expands With AI, Biometrics, And Ad Tech

November 28, 2018

LAS VEGAS, Nov. 27, 2018 — The International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMEC) announced the launch of the GMCNgine™, a global platform to help find missing and abducted children. The GMCNgine combines artificial intelligence and digital advertising technology to help locate missing children vulnerable to exploitation, sexual abuse, and trafficking.

The platform uses geo-targeting and dynamic ad insertion to get missing children alerts in front of the right communities at critical times. Meanwhile, machine learning and artificial intelligence models work around the clock to scour millions of images on the dark and clear web for matches or photos resembling the images of missing children, making it easier for law enforcement and non-government organizations to form new case leads and ultimately bring missing children home.

“The GMCNgine sparks global change in missing child investigations,” said Maura Harty, President & Chief Executive Officer, ICMEC. “This is an invaluable tool for law enforcement and NGOs around the world.” The international launch of the GMCNgine will occur on Wednesday, November 28 in Cordoba, Spain, where the Spanish Ministry of the Interior is hosting the 10th annual conference for ICMEC’s Global Missing Children’s Network (GMCN).

The GMCNgine is populated by 29 countries with case data from the 33 members of ICMEC’s GMCN, a dedicated, vetted group of law enforcement and NGOs committed to finding missing children. Through the use of machine learning and artificial intelligence, the GMCNgine compares cases in the global system, allowing officials to track cases across borders and locate children faster. Countries are easily able to join the GMCN, increasing collaboration and the possibilities of finding vulnerable children. “We need to talk to each other, we need to search around the clock. Now our job is get every country involved so they have access to the most innovative tools when searching for missing children,” said Harty.

ICMEC is collaborating with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to make the GMCNgine a reality. GMCNgine uses Amazon Rekognition, an image and video analysis tool, to detect, analyze, and compare faces in imagery associated with open cases about missing children. In addition, technology partners like FIA, Web-IQ, First Factory, and Biometrica are providing critical services and round out the core team. “Collaboration is key to our mission. Working with each of these influential organizations has allowed us to bring this project to fruition,” said Harty.

“We couldn’t be prouder to collaborate with ICMEC and its partner organizations on this important work,” said Teresa Carlson, Vice President, AWS Worldwide Public Sector. “ICMEC’s commitment to building a safer world for children is one of the most important issues of our time. Our hope is that collaborative efforts like this one will help provide mission-critical resources and support to those on the front lines, giving them faster access to better tools to protect children everywhere.”

FIA has already delivered more than one billion AMBER alert impressions to 180 million U.S. internet devices and is now making this technology available to GMCN member countries. This geo-targeted information will be shared for maximum impact to potentially create solid leads for law enforcement. FIA and their partners will also disseminate alerts on digital signage from large format billboards to airport advertising, to street and transit kiosks.

“Our partnership with ICMEC and the GMCNgine brings targeted alerts to 29 countries, but one day, we hope it will be every country.” said Jason Bier, President of FIA and Chief Data & Privacy Officer at Engine Group.

About the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children (ICMEC)
ICMEC has dedicated 20 years to creating innovative programs that address each angle of Child Protection and continue to address the UN SDG Target 16.2: Aiming to end abuse, exploitation, trafficking and all forms of violence against and torture of children. The organization employs smart collaboration and innovative technology to effect change in making the world safer for children. Learn more and get involved with the GMCNgine at

Laura Jennings