We Are In Danger of Losing the Global Battle for Child Safety

0 have signed. Let’s get to 50,000!


You may not realize it, but there is a worldwide battle to protect children from online exploitation that is underway right now.   

At risk are the critical tools and technology that tech companies use to identify child sexual exploitation online, including imagery of child sexual abuse and incidents of grooming and online enticement. These tools regularly lead to the rescue of child victims and the arrest of offenders, but they have repeatedly been threatened by the ongoing debate around online privacy.   

At the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC), we believe privacy considerations should also include those of the hundreds of thousands of children around the world who are victims of online sexual exploitation and who will be left with little hope of rescue or protection if the ability to use these tools is lost.  

On December 7, the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) of the European Parliament voted to approve an amendment to the ePrivacy Directive that allows tech companies to continue using these tools for two years, but further negotiations failed to reach a consensus before discussions ended for the year. The EU will resume discussions in January 2021 about a potential carve-out for tech companies to continue protecting children online Yet, as of today, the failure to reach consensus could have a devastating impact on children, especially in the EU and tech companies must make critical decisions about their future use of these technological tools.   

We still believe there is hope for a long-term solution.  Sign our petition today and join us in urging the European Union to approve this amendment when discussions resume in January. 

Additionally, the amendment only preserves the use of these tools for the next two years. A more permanent solution still has to be found. Please stay with us as we strategize with government, the tech industry and child protection organizations advocating for solutions that protect children.  

We know this issue is hard to talk about, but the numbers cannot be ignored. NCMEC has received more than 82 million reports of child sexual exploitation. What could be worse than knowing this horrific abuse is happening but never hearing about it?   
 
Please share this with your friends, family and colleagues and for more information about this important issue and how you can help, visit missingkids.org/childsafetyfirst.