September 01, 2018

Diana Solano, Laura Bello, Camilo Escobar-Velásquez, Santiago Liñan and Sergio Velásquez, under the mentoring of Mario Linares-Vásquez, won the first Hackaton in Colombia Against Human Trafficking. This hackaton was promoted by United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), GloACT, Free Steps Foundation and IBM. Crongratulations!


In a 32-hour race against the clock, university students, young programmers, engineers, and designers had participated in a hackathon to create a prototype mobile application or website to combat human trafficking. The hackathon entitled ‘ Bluehack Free Steps Against Human Trafficking’ has been run by IBM and was supported by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), under the framework of Global Action against Trafficking in Persons and the smuggling of Migrants ( GLO.ACT), and the Free Steps Foundation. The hackathon - the first of its kind to take place in Colombia - was scheduled to take place from 31 August 1 September 2018 in Bogotá. During the hackathon participants needed to develop tech solutions while considering the questions:

  1. How can we strengthen coordination between government authorities and the passenger transport industry to activate and manage alerts on travelers and migrants at risk of being victims of trafficking in persons?
  2. How can we increase the speed and accuracy of the process of identifying and tracking victims of human trafficking in sexually exploitative material?
  3. How can we prevent the consumption and distribution of sexually exploitative material on the internet?