More than 20 arrests have been made after a monthslong investigation into Internet prostitution, police said Monday.

The sting, dubbed Operation John 5.0, began in October 2005 with Suffolk County police officers gathering intelligence from various Internet sites advertising sexual services in exchange for fees. Prostitutes and their clients were targeted.

The investigation revealed that the people involved in online prostitution use little discretion and frequently use public areas for their encounters, the police said in a statement announcing the arrests.