Related Research Studies and Findings

Related Research Studies and Findings

“Examining Job Stress and Satisfaction Among Digital Forensic Examiners”
Thomas J. Holt and Kristie R. Blevins

This study focuses on job satisfaction and work stress levels in digital forensic analysts. The study found that digital forensic analysts are highly satisfied with their job, and report moderate work stress. Also, those that felt more conflicted about the work they do were more stressed and less satisfied with their jobs. In addition, education, gender, and age affected job satisfaction.

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“Work Exposure to Child Pornography in ICAC Task Forces and Affiliates”
Janis Wolak and Kimberly J. Mitchell

This article studies exposure to child pornography in ICAC Task Forces, as well as the level of preparation and support ICAC investigators are provided in their work. The study found that only 21% of ICAC agencies provided what the study determined was proper preparation for child pornography investigators. It also discusses strategies for providing support that can lessen traumatic impact.

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“Identifying and Managing Stress in Child Pornography and Child Exploitation”
Meredith Krause

This article provides a glimpse into the stressors investigators of child pornography face in the name of child welfare. It discusses work conditions that affect the risk level for trauma from this work. The article also discusses ways the mental health community is working to protect child exploitation investigators from trauma and excessive stress.

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“Secondary Traumatic Stress and Burnout among Law Enforcement Investigators Exposed to Disturbing Media Images”
Lisa M. Perez, Jeremy Jones, David R. Englert, and Daniel Sachau

This study also examines the stress associated with investigating child pornography material, but more specifically focuses on secondary traumatic stress and job burnout. It found that more exposure to disturbing material was related to both higher burnout rates and secondary traumatic stress, but that those with supportive personal relationships often scored lower on these measures.

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“The Emotional Impact on and Coping Strategies Employed by Police Teams Investigating Internet Child Exploitation”
Carolyn M. Burns, Jeff Morley, Richard Bradshaw, and José Domene

This article discusses the level of awareness of secondary traumatic stress from Internet Child Exploitation (ICE) work and how it has changed over time. It also explores adaptive strategies for reducing mental trauma from this work.

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“Helping the Helpers: The Safeguard Program at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children”
Juliet M. Francis, Gina De Arth-Pendley, Erin Reilly, Christine Feller, and John Shehan.

This article describes a study done at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) that attempted to create a “Safeguard Program” that would promote the well being of employees repeatedly exposed to victims and perpetrators of child exploitation. Analysts who had worked in the field for more than four years suffered from increased compassion fatigue and burnout, as well as a reduction in compassion satisfaction. For those who had less than one year of work in the field, they were found to have more negative emotions on a daily basis, as well as decreased satisfaction in their effectiveness as a helper. Through their findings, NCMEC created a training program to promote analyst self-care and awareness of the risks of exposure to child exploitation material.

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