Child Protection&Online Safety

29 March 2008

au: Ministers fail to agree on game rating change The Age

The issue of whether to create an R18 classification for video games will be put to public consultation following a meeting of censorship ministers today.

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uk: Plaudits and concern over Tanya Byron BBC

The games industry has welcomed the recommendations of the Byron Review but concerns have been raised that ratings still need to be future proofed. Dr Tanya Byron has recommended that the role of the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) be expanded.

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uk: Facebook, Bebo, My Space face censorship/child protection orders The Times

Social networking sites will be required to remove material unsuitable for children, such as nude or violent images and comments, within 24 hours of receiving a complaint, under a tough new code for internet safety.

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28 March 2008

UK parents to be shown how to protect children online The Guardian

The first national strategy for child internet safety, including a streamlined system for classifying computer video games and codes of practice for social networking sites, will be set out today in a ground-breaking report for government.

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26 March 2008

Internet Miss Bimbo game for girls attacked by parents The Guardian

Internet Miss Bimbo game for girls attacked by parents Parents' groups have condemned a new internet game in which girls as young as nine are encouraged to "buy" their virtual dolls breast operations and facelifts.

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How Australian police broke net pedophile ring The Age

Australian police have played a leading role in smashing an international pedophile internet network. More than 22 pedophiles who thought their super encryption code was unbreakable have been arrested in the US, Canada, Europe and Australia.

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22 March 2008

FBI uses fake hyperlinks to snare child porn suspects CNet

The FBI has been using fake hyperlinks that purportedly link to illegal videos of minors having sex, and then raiding the homes of anyone willing to click on them reports Declan McCullagh on CNet.

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20 March 2008

uk: Concerns raised over online child safety The Guardian

Jim Gamble, chief executive of the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre, has said that some internet service providers were not doing enough to protect children online.

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19 March 2008

US Crackdown on Child Pornography Washington Post

Lewd photographs of children were disappearing from adult bookstores. Child porn magazines in plain brown envelopes were no longer reaching customers through the mail. It was the early 1990s, and experts believed that federal law enforcement efforts were ending child pornography.

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16 March 2008

Ban junk food advertising on internet, say UK campaigners The Guardian

Food and drink companies should be banned from marketing unhealthy snacks and drinks to young children via new media such as social networking sites and text messaging, a coalition of international consumer groups and health bodies recommends today.

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12 March 2008

Japan to outlaw possession of child pornography The Guardian

Japan is to bow to international pressure and ban the possession of child pornography, although the new law is expected to anger child welfare groups by exempting manga comics and animated films.

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11 March 2008

'Swirl' abuse suspect trial due BBC

A suspected paedophile known as Mr Swirl because of the way he allegedly disguised his face in photographs is set to go on trial in Thailand. Christopher Neil, a Canadian, denies charges of abusing two underage boys.

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Operation Koala: face haunts pedophile-busters The Australian

It's a face that haunts police around the world. A young girl, probably now nine, who has grown up from infancy on film - thousands of pictures and movies shot of her being molested by an abuser who then shared the images with a network of like-minded internet pedophiles. As a two-year Queensland-led investigation culminated last weekend with the arrest of 22 people in eight countries, the relief and celebration at busting one of the world's longest-running and most sophisticated internet pedophile rings was muted by the knowledge that the girl was still out of reach of protection.

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Australian study targets 'toxic' cyber-bullying The Australian

The West Australian Government will spend $400,000 on a world-first five-year study into cyber-bullying, amid growing concern about the damaging effect on children being targeted by abusive text messages, emails and degrading digital photos.

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07 March 2008

International Child Porn Ring Uncovered The Guardian

Detectives in three continents believe they have broken one of the most sophisticated paedophile rings ever. Eight British children between six and 14 years old have been rescued and arrests made in the UK, Australia and the US. The ring used advanced techniques to avoid detection and one member boasted of belonging to the "greatest group of paedos ever to gather in one place".

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Australian govt sticks to guns on internet porn filters ABC

Porn on the net is a massive industry, with a very high request rate across all search engines. But while it may be legal for adults, children are accessing porn on the net and in large measures, and very little is being done to stop it.

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02 March 2008

EU extends net safety programme for children BBC

The European Commission is spending 55m euros (£42m) on making the net a safer place for children. The money will be spent over four years on educational efforts and ways to protect children from inappropriate content and cyber bullying. It will also research the ways that children use the net on computers and other devices such as mobile phones.

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01 March 2008

How Dangerous Is the Internet for Children? New York Times

A few years ago, a parenting magazine asked me to write an article about the dangers that children face when they go online. As it turns out, I was the wrong author for the article they had in mind. The editor was deeply disappointed by my initial draft. Its chief message was this: "Sure, there are dangers. But they're hugely overhyped by the media. The tales of pedophiles luring children out of their homes are like plane crashes: they happen extremely rarely, but when they do, they make headlines everywhere. The Internet is just another facet of socialization for the new generation; as always, common sense and a level head are the best safeguards."

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27 February 2008

au: Education 'as effective as internet filtering'

Better education about online safety would be just as effective as internet filtering to prevent children from accessing inappropriate material on the web, according to a report by Australia's communications watchdog.

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Japan cracks down on child porn Sydney Morning Herald

Japan's ruling party plans to ban possession of child pornography after pressure from Washington to fall in with industrialised countries that have stepped up the fight against sexual exploitation of children.

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us: Computer-Generated Child Porn Hinders Law Enforcement E-Commerce Times

Each week, about 100,000 sexually explicit images of children arrive on CDs or portable disk drives at Michelle Collins' office. They are sent by police and prosecutors who hope Collins and her 11 analysts at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children can verify that the graphic pictures are real, not computer-generated. When they can't, officials sometimes turn to outside experts.

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Australian net filter at test phase Australian IT

The federal Government's plan to have internet service providers filter pornography and other internet content deemed inappropriate for children is going full-steam ahead.

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21 February 2008

Study rejects Internet sex predator stereotype ZDNet

The typical online sexual predator is not someone posing as a teen to lure unsuspecting victims into face-to-face meetings that result in violent rapes, U.S. researchers said Monday.

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19 February 2008

UK online content providers sign up to code of conduct to protect children The Guardian

Media companies including the BBC, Channel 4, Google, Yahoo and social-networking site Bebo have signed up to a new code of conduct, to be announced today, designed to give parents more information about the suitability for children of audiovisual content available on the internet and mobile phones.

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15 February 2008

Safer Internet Day [12 Feb 08]: Online risks to children on the increase across Europe, evidence shows Public Technology

Evidence that more children across Europe are being exposed to risks online and are increasingly distressed by them was revealed this week by EU Kids Online to mark Safer Internet Day.

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