Damian Green said a new computer database, being built with government backing, will attempt to speed up the way police can investigate the online images of child abuse.
But he said the problem was “ever changing” and pointed to studies showing the kind of abuse depicted the “vile” images was plumbing new depths of depravity.
“These are vile, disgusting images. They are photographs and videos that record children being abused and raped,” said Mr Green.
“Even more disturbingly, the research shows that these images appear to be becoming more extreme, more sadistic and more violent, with a greater proportion depicting the abuse of younger children.”