Wildlife Trafficking Thriving on Facebook and Other Social Media Platforms

Wildlife trafficking has been a persistent and ever-evolving problem. Facebook is not helping, and so are other social media platforms. The social media platform’s lack of cooperation with law enforcement means that it is difficult to fully investigate wildlife crimes, and it’s difficult to accurately measure how profitable these activities are. As a result, the USFWS is not able to effectively investigate the online activities of wildlife traffickers, and they have limited ability to subpoena information from Facebook.

Facebook’s commercial policy prevents it from promoting the sale of live animals on the site, and it is a member of the Coalition to End Wildlife Trafficking Online, an effort by conservation groups and internet companies to stop the online trade in wildlife. Although Facebook says it has made progress in preventing the online wildlife trade, conservation groups believe that the social network’s commercial policy creates a ripe environment for smugglers.

Facebook’s parent company, Meta, has denied that it has any knowledge of the illegal wildlife trade on its platform. However, the researchers said that it’s difficult to track the criminals on Facebook, and that Facebook has done little to combat the problem. Despite this, illegal wildlife sales continue to flourish on the site.

Researchers from TRAFFIC have been tracking the online platforms used by wildlife traffickers for nearly two decades. In recent years, this trade has transitioned from traditional markets to e-commerce websites and social media. In many parts of the world, the majority of the illegal wildlife trade is conducted online. On Facebook, the traffickers post advertisements for items they want to sell, as well as posts on endangered species. Some even sell cheetahs, monkeys, and elephant tusks.

Wildlife trafficking on Facebook and other social media platforms is growing, and there are concerns about the potential impact. The World Wide Fund for Nature has said that illegal online sales of wildlife have increased by 74% between 2015 and 2021. The vast majority of the illegal online sales involved live animals. In particular, pangolins are targeted for their scales and meat. This illegal trade poses a serious threat to global conservation and biodiversity, and it threatens public health.

Wildlife trafficking on Facebook and other social media platforms is not only a problem for local wildlife, but also threatens entire ecosystems. It also wreaks havoc on local communities. As a result, policing this trade on these platforms has become increasingly challenging.

Despite the restrictions imposed by Facebook, wildlife trafficking on Facebook has become increasingly widespread. Although illegal, it is still largely hidden, and takes place within private groups. International smuggling syndicates prefer this option because it is convenient for them. In addition, Facebook users who are interested in buying wildlife on Facebook should also be aware of the fact that this trade is thriving on these platforms.

Wildlife trade on Facebook and other social media platforms is a serious problem, and conservation groups are taking action to fight it. For example, they have banned certain types of animal products, including certain reptiles, which are illegal under CITES. In Germany, the trade in reptiles is particularly widespread. The government has banned the export of live reptiles, but smuggled animals can trade freely in Europe.

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