The operation is part of the first National Strategy for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction, Attorney General Eric Holder said.
A department statement said the new strategy "also provides the first-ever comprehensive threat assessment of the dangers facing children" from child pornography, online enticement, child sex tourism and commercial sexual exploitation and "outlines a blueprint to strengthen the fight against these crimes," as well as increased cooperation among all levels of government with a national database.
The department also created 38 new assistant U.S. attorney positions for child exploitation cases.
"Although we've made meaningful progress in protecting children across the country ... it is time to renew our commitment to this work, it is time to intensify our efforts," Holder said in prepared remarks. "This new strategy provides the road map necessary to do just that -- to streamline our education, prevention and prosecution activities; to improve information sharing and collaboration, and to make the most effective use of limited resources."