ALBANY, N.Y. - Internet providers Verizon Communications Inc., Sprint Nextel Corp., and Time Warner Cable Inc. have agreed to block access to child pornography and eliminate the material from their servers, New York's attorney general said yesterday.

The companies also will collectively pay $1.1 million to help finance efforts to remove the online child porn created and circulated by users through their services, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said. The changes will affect customers nationwide.

Investigators said they found 88 newsgroups devoted to child pornography in an investigation lasting six to eight months. More than 11,000 images were collected using software that identifies child pornography by tracking patterns in the pixels of the images, Cuomo's office said.

Cuomo said the companies acted immediately when told of the concern. He said it was essential to work with the Internet providers rather than trying to prosecute thousands of users.

The agreements follow an undercover investigation of child-porn newsgroups. Cuomo said in a prepared statement that his investigation of other service providers was continuing.

Time Warner Cable acted as soon as it learned that users were posting objectionable material and eliminated the newsgroups, a mainstay of the Internet from its early days, said spokesman Alex Dudley.

Verizon acted immediately to shut down the sites, Verizon spokesman Eric Rabe said.

"We are doing our part to deter the accessibility of such harmful content through the Internet, and we are providing monetary resources that will go toward the identification and removal of online child pornography," said Sprint spokesman Matthew Sullivan.