13 April 2010

UK - Facebook announces new safety measures, but resists CEOP on safety button

(Daily Telegraph)
Facebook has opted against adding a safety button on each user's profile page, despite calls from a leading UK child protection agency, as it doesn't believe it is an effective way to encourage children to report abuse. It did announce a raft of new safety measures which it believes will be more effective in protecting children's safety online. Instead of the button, UK users under the age of 19 will now be able to click on the "Report abuse" link on each page and have the option to report the abuse directly to CEOP as well as to Facebook employees. The reason Facebook had not reported any abuse to CEOP direct was because it is a US based business and all UK abuse reports go straight to CEOP's US counterpart, the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). Facebook also announced the creation of a new global 24-hour police hotline – which will be manned by Facebook and agency staff. Facebook also announced a five million pound investment in education and awareness relating to child safety online. It has also redesigned its Safety Centre adding additional resources for parents, teachers, teens and police to explain Facebook's tools for using the service safely. See also Facebook has launched a new £5m online campaign (Utalkmarketing.com).