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Internet Watch Foundation – IWF

One of the bonuses of using Zoom for Club Speaker meetings is that Clubs have extended invites to other Clubs in our Region to join them. This has worked really well.

On Monday 28th June 2021, SI Cambridge had an online talk from the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), a not-for-profit organisation. Many of us were not aware of their existence. So what do they do?

IWF’s vision is the global elimination of child sexual abuse imagery online and they are supported by the global internet industry, all the major TEC organisations and the European Commission. The internet doesn’t respect geographical borders, so they work closely with partners worldwide. This includes the industry, law enforcement agencies, governments, charities and other hotlines such as Childline. This helps them to eradicate online images of child sexual abuse as quickly and efficiently as possible. Essentially they are working to make the internet a safer place.

– They help victims of child sexual abuse worldwide by identifying and removing online images and videos of their abuse.
– They search for child sexual abuse images and videos and then have them removed.
– They offer a Hotline that is a safe place for the public to report anonymously child sexual abuse material.

IWF have developed a Portal that is available to countries who are not in a position to offer a full service. This enables members of the public to report online child abuse.

In the UK alone The National Crime Agency estimates there to be between 550,000 and 850,000 people who pose varying forms of sexual risk to children from babies to 15 year olds. It is apparent that 11 – 13 yr old girls are particularly targeted.

IWF mount campaigns at both parents and children, making them aware of the dangers and what they should do if they are approached online to participate in sexual images.