We are a research & technology organization fighting human trafficking.
We build the infrastructure & connect the dots across data, concepts, and agencies.
CEO joined research lab
Our current CEO joins an experimental research lab as a graduate student at Creighton University. It became apparent how detrimental the lack of data on the human trafficking industry was and the implications presented when trying to conduct meaningful research.
HTI at Creighton is formed
Grants paved the way for the formal creation of the Human Trafficking Initiative, and from there, our methodology began to form. Using data science, online advertisements, and network analysis, we began to gain insight into the industry – understanding the complicated dynamics distinguishing factors from willful sex work.
Our research strategy proved successful; we were able to identify high-risk individuals and potential networks to law enforcement agencies. We supported investigations and provided our first official lead.
Co-Chairing Nebraska Human Trafficking Task Force
Our CEO signs on as co-chair of the Nebraska Human Trafficking Task Force Screening & Data Committee in an effort to improve collective identification and response.
First iteration of LEADS is launched
The first coherent iteration of our LEADS software was built, and we collaborated extensively with investigators on two leads that resulted in the prosecution of offenders who had been systematically exploiting people all across the country.
Wrote criminal record relief law
If our algorithms were going to be useful in solving real problems, then they needed to reflect the real world. So, in addition to studying the problem, we worked hand-in-hand with people on the ground. We worked with law enforcement on investigations, provided data reports to jurisdictions across the country, put on an international conference for human trafficking research, and worked on policy. This included the drafting of Nebraska’s criminal record relief law for victims of trafficking to clear their records for crimes they were forced (by their traffickers) to commit.
The Omaha Model
We continue to scale our approach and gain recognition as “the Omaha model.”
HTI Labs is born
As the seed funding came to an end and Backpage was shut down, we designed our dream solutions and decided to invest in building it as HTI Labs, a social enterprise.
Local Traffickers Prosecuted
Two local traffickers are prosecuted with the support of our leads.
“HTI’s research & analysis have repeatedly been instrumental in making our operations successful. They helped discover & organize the data on a large, multi-layered, gang-related sex trafficking ring in Omaha.” -Nebraska Human Trafficking Task Force Coordinator
CEO Testifies at Senate Hearing
Our CEO testifies before the Senate’s Subcommittee National Security and International Trade and Finance Committee regarding Human Trafficking and its intersection with the Financial System.
PAVE is released
We launched PAVE, a guided platform that helps entities identify and respond to trafficking as a community. Nebraska DHHS was our first client. Today, their entire child welfare system uses the platform.
Updated version of LEADS is launched
A reinvigorated version of LEADS is designed to support investigative partners in navigating an industry that is constantly evolving. It is launched in several jurisdictions across the United States.
PAVE expands into schools
Cemented PAVE contract to expand into local schools.