Communications Networks, Content and Technology
European Commission Directorate General

Better Internet for Kids

Better Internet for Kids

Goal

Our vision is that all children across Europe have access to  positive creative content and experiences online in an environment that guarantees trust and confidence and where the distribution of child sexual abuse images becomes increasingly rare.

Action

Developing strategies that support the Internet as a trusted environment for children, through appropriate measures to improve the quality of content available for children, to protect and empower children online, to manage risks, and mitigate their exposure to harmful or illegal content and contact, and to continue the fight against the distribution of child sexual abuse material..

Situation

We lack quality content and services for children – only 32% of 9-12 year olds are satisfied with what they find to do online (EU KIDS Online II survey). The market is both small and highly fragmented, and not well developed across European languages and cultures.  We lack 'awareness raising' from early schools to young adults. Strategies to date do not accommodate the changes in technologies, services, emerging new risks and maturity of the users nor do they provide parents with effective protection tools and rated content necessary for younger children.   According to the EU Kids Online survey only 28% of parents block or filter websites visited by their children. At the same time, 80% of parents believe that the improved availability and performance of parental control tools would contribute to a safer use of the internet by their children. Digital child sexual abuse images continue to proliferate – in 2012 the number of reports processed by INHOPE hotlines increased by 25% and changing distribution channels and perpetuating abuse, and other types of criminal behaviours such as online grooming are difficult to detect.

Input

Full-Time Equivalent: 
People: 
11.00 full-time equivalent (FTE)

Collaboration with other DGs or agencies:

Budget: 
2,2 M EUR and 1 M EUR in CIP, beyond depending on DSI decision
Other: 

plus inputs from industry through their self-regulation commitments; and actions delivered through the European network of  Safer Internet Centres  (SIC)  - eg the Safer Internet Day campaigns, and by the annual Safer Internet Forum .

Inclusion, Skills & Youth (Unit G.4)
Outputs

CEO Coalition for BIK

Industry-led multistakeholder platform (CEO Coalition) to make the internet a better place for children where 31 Companies signatories committed to take positive action in 5 areas: simple tools for users to report harmful content and contact, age-appropriate privacy settings, wider use of content classification, wider availability and use of parental controls, effective take down of child abuse material.

Timeframe: Q4 2013

Indicators

576

Number of active CEO Coalition

Target 31 CEO Coalition members active until end 2013 and to continue in "lite" format beyond 2013.(Q4 2014)

CEO Coalition extended

Extended CEO Coalition to work on the Joint Declaration on sharing ressources and stimulating awareness on BIK issues; multi-stakeholder platform

Indicators

1826

Extended CEO Coalition

Baseline 31 members
Target extended the Coalition beyond 31(Q4 2014)

EU/EFTA wide SIC network and impact

EU/EFTA-wide network of Safer Internet Centres (SICs), supporting awareness campaigns, helplines and hotlines (to report child sexual abuse material), as measured by number of countries taking part in Safer Internet Day, number of reports to helplines and hotlines, number of children reached. In 2013 Safer Internet Day was celebrated in 103 countries.  In Europe, the national campaigns reported reaching more than 10 million people and 16.000 schools.

Timeframe: ongoing

Indicators

1735

Number of centres and participation in Safer Internet Day

Baseline 30 Centres and 100 countries
Target Maintaining the nb of Safer Internet Centres across EU and EFTA; Celebrating Safer Internet Day in at least 100 countries(2014)

Positive content competitions

National/EU competition on positive internet content for kids covering most Member States; The first pilot competition took place in 2011 and involved  14 Member States which received 202 youth-made entries and 585 adults-made entries

Timeframe: Q1 2014

Indicators

1737

Positive content competition

Target Award for best content at Safer Internet Day 2014 (EU and national editions)(Q1 2014)

Hotlines to report/remove Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM)

International network of hotlines on reporting and removing online child sexual abuse material (CSAM); In 2012, INHOPE Hotlines processed 37.404 reports of web-based Child Sexual Abuse Material, which represents a 25% increase on the previous year leading to less exposure to CSAM.

Indicators

1739

CSAM report and removal (lead indicator)

Baseline 37.404 (number of reports processed by hotlines in 2012)
Target increased number of reports processed by hotlines leading to content removed within 3 days(Q4 2014)

Parental control tools

Promotion of wider availability and use of parental control tools through self-regulation and benchmarking of tools via SIP Benchmarking Study.

Indicators

1744

Uptake of parental control tools

Target Increase take-up of parental control tools(Q4 2014)

Safer Internet Programme

Implementation & evaluation of the Safer Internet Programme – through Work Programme for 2013

Indicators

1761

SIP Call

Target Evaluation and selection SIP; negotiation of 2 proposals(Q4 2013)

Safer Internet and CEF

Safer Internet Services infrastructure under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF): Definition and launch of Safer Internet services and core platforms

Timeframe: Q4 2014

Indicators

1769

Definition SI and platform

Target Definition and launch of Safer Internet services and core platforms with at least 11 MS(Q4 2014)
Results/Impacts

New child-appropriate content

New content for children, as measured by the range of age-related services and application of age-rating/content classification schemes; businesses developing online content for children, based on available trust-raising tools such as parental controls, and new tools supporting child-friendly content creation.

Timeframe: 2015

Indicators

1782

Satisfaction with content

Target 70% of 9-12 year olds satisfied with content and activities for them online(2015)

Child-friendly interoperability

Target interoperability platform for child-friendly content(Q1 2015)

Parental control tools

Target Parental control tools available on 100% new devices and systems(Q1 2015)

Link to DG CONNECT's Top Level Targets

  • Europe 2020 - The share of early school leavers should be under 10% and at least 40% of 30-34 years old should have completed a tertiary or equivalent education