The Child Sexual Exploitation Kill Chain, Introduction
The kill chain originates as a military approach to conducting an attack against targets. In one of the military models, the chain consists of find, fix, track, target, engage and assess. This concept has been adapted to cybersecurity by the Lockheed Martin Corporation. This kill chain consists of reconnaissance, weaponization, delivery, exploitation, installation, “command and control” and “actions on objectives”. The cyber kill chain was developed as a guide for network defenders to provide the phases of attack against a computer network. By knowing and understanding the phases of attack the defenders can provide specific defenses against specific parts of the kill chain. The goal is to break the chain as early as possible in the attack.
It is clear that more people than ever in more ways than ever are after children for their own sexual pleasure. The people of GOD must make moves to protect their children. As the culture becomes more deviant more of these attacks will take place. In Matthew 10:16 the LORD tells his disciples that they must be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. We live in a hostile environment where there is an ongoing war for your children and sexual exploitation is just one front of this war. The guidance that the LORD gave to his disciples in the book of Matthew also applies to the people of GOD in this day and age.
During my reading and research on child sexual exploitation, a pattern of phases became evident. I noticed the same phases in books, news reports, personal accounts of victims and found confirmation of this pattern in the Deviant Behavior academic journal. The article is titled Stages of Sexual Grooming: Recognizing Potentially Predatory Behaviors of Child Molesters. The phases or kill chain for child sexual exploitation are select, access, trust, desensitize and dominate. This kill chain does not apply to a situation such as a child being kidnapped and raped. It simply lists the phases that result in a child being manipulated into performing sexual acts. The goal of the kill chain approach is to provide a simple and systematic approach to detect and defend children from those who would sexually abuse them.
During this blog series, we will explore each phase of the kill chain by examining how a predator may operate in each phase, clues that a defender could look for and methods that could be used to stop an attack. Our next blog will focus on the select phase of the kill chain.