The "Safer Internet" program of the European Commission and the French Safer Internet Centre
In 1999, the « Safer Internet Action Plan » was launched by the European Commission to promote safe use of the Internet by fighting against illegal and harmful content on networks worldwide, and to encourage a favourable environment at European level for the development of the Internet industry. The Inhope international network of reporting services or hotlines has benefited from this program since its inception.
As early as 2000, AFA's Point de Contact has been supported for its action by the successive « Safer Internet » programs of the European Commission, just like the other European hotlines of the Ihnope network.
From 2005, the Commission has also been funding awareness raising actions in every member state through these same programs. And since 2008, telephone helplines dedicated to children have been emerging and progressively integrated to the existing awareness nodes.
Since July 1st 2009, AFA's Point de Contact hotline, together with the awareness raising activities of « Internet Sans Crainte » and the « Net Ecoute » helpline, make up the French « Safer Internet Center » supported by the European Commission.
This merger of hotlines and national awareness raising entities is born of a request made by the European Commission to improve the effectiveness of the different Safer Internet initiatives in each Member State.
Finally in 2007, AFA's Point de Contact set up an advisory committee bringing together the various national players of the Internet industry, in order to present on a regular basis the statistics and trends of the hotline, and to go through news topics relating to cybercrime and child protection.
The global network of reporting centres : the INHOPE international association
The « Point de Contact » reporting service is itself, via AFA, a member of the INHOPE international association of Internet hotlines, created in November 1999, with AFA one of its founding members: www.inhope.org.
Since then, AFA has been meeting with its counterparts several times a year and actively contributes to the network whose primary objective is to notify and remove child pornography content distributed on the Internet at its source (« notice and take-down » procedure), while helping to improve the protection of children in their on line activities.
Indeed, the work of a single on line reporting service may be very successful at national level, but its influence is limited when the content is hosted in a foreign country or when the alleged offender lives abroad.
Being part of the INHOPE network allows to significantly accelerate the processing of a report when potentially illegal content is hosted abroad: within a few seconds, the report arrives in the country where the content is hosted and can therefore, if necessary, be subjected to a judicial inquiry and be removed. INHOPE's mission is to facilitate and coordinate the work of the hotlines in fighting against illegal content on the Internet. INHOPE currently has 44 partner hotlines in 38 countries throughout Europe and around the world (Australia, USA, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, South Africa...).
www.pointdecontact.net is the network's French partner.
INHOPE thus aims to facilitate cooperation between its members, to assist and train new hotlines, to help inform policy makers and raise awareness about safety rules on the Internet, in Europe and at international level.
Finally, INHOPE is always seeking to further expand its network, particularly in countries where there are no hotlines yet, in order to reinforce the effectiveness of its approach.
See more: INHOPE Code of Practice