Once called ‘Langxang’, the kingdom of a thousand elephants, Laos is still home to one of the largest remaining populations of Asian elephants in Indochina, said WCS. A sad fact is that poaching for ivory causes a drastic drop of elephant population and the forested part of the country has become a hotspot of human-elephant conflicts. Globally, forest crimes like illegal logging and wildlife crimes like by poaching, trafficking in live or dead endangered animals are often undetected.
However, with the initiative WildLeaks, an online whistleblowers platform to take down powerful poaching networks and illegal logging operations, observers can report and provide tips on poaching activity while staying safe themselves. All the anonymous information and tips are evaluated and validated by experienced individuals from law enforcement agencies or trusted conservation organisations that specialise in particular regions.
As stated on their website, WildLeaks receives and evaluates anonymous information regarding wildlife and forest crimes and transforms it into possible actions such as:
- Begin or continue an investigation with our teams and/or in collaboration with trusted partners
- Share the information with trusted contacts within selected law enforcement agencies
- Share the information with media partners
According to Treehugger, the site is targeting large poaching and trafficking operations like criminals, traffickers, businessmen and corrupt government officials. The founders of WildLeaks believe that whistleblowers can play a crucial role in fighting back, creating awareness and doing justice.