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INHOPE 2012 | Facts, Figures and Trends

The International Association of Internet Hotlines took the wraps off a set of infographics featuring statistics for the year 2012 and highlighting key findings.

A vital element of the work undertaken by INHOPE is precisely the collation of accurate and  timely statistics from its network – 43 member hotlines in 37 countries worldwide. This enables INHOPE to build a global picture of the distribution of  Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) and show the magnitude of the problem. INHOPE statistics are gathered via the INHOPE Report Management System (IHRMS), a unique database used by hotlines to record and forward reports of CSAM.

2012: Online child sexual abuse material ‘taken down’ quickly

 2012 has seen impressive advances in the time taken to remove images and videos of children being sexually abused online. Whereas in the past, evidence of these horrific crimes may have remained online for many months, occasionally years, INHOPE can now report that in the majority of instances the content is taken down in days and sometimes just hours.

This hasn’t happened by chance. A concerted effort by all 43 INHOPE Hotlines, their law enforcement partners and internet companies has made this huge difference. Without everyone playing their part in a professional and pragmatic way, this outcome would never have been thought possible.

Five Infographics that put the fight against Online Child Sexual Abuse in perspective

Infographic1: Map of the INHOPE network, Illegal Contentand Volume Stats

This infographic shows the total of all reports recorded by  INHOPE Member Hotlines at over 1,000,000. These reports include a vast spectrum of complaints such as terrorism, racism, pornography available to minors, peer  to peer content, content posted to social media services, newsgroups and many more online channels. Most of the 43 Hotlines offer a variety of remits to the public based on national agreements. These range from child sexual abuse material, to racism, to terrorism to pornography publicly available to minors and more.

All INHOPE Members record the total number of reports they  receive from the public irrespective of whether the content is illegal or not. The importance of this data is that it reveals the volume of complaints handled by Hotlines. To put this into context, if a video is reported to a Hotline, an  Analyst must view its full duration before determining its legality. This is a very time consuming activity which does not always translate into a decision that the material is illegal.

Infographic 2: Reports and Victims

This infographic relates to the worst of the worst area, Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM). There are no grey areas here. Many people find it difficult to imagine pornographic images of children, and therefore do  not understand what is meant by «child pornography». In many countries this is referred to as «Child Sexual Abuse Material» (CSAM) to reinforce that behind images of child pornography, there is sexual abuse of real children.

The data provided in this infographicis the result of  considerable, substantiated quality assessments and fine judgments. A worrying and developing trend is the increasing incidence of very young children including babies as victims.

Infographic 3: Hosting

This infographic is a comparison in hosting trends between North America and Europe. Hosting patterns change over time depending on the popularity of technological services provided within countries. Cloud services or file hosting sites also known as cyber lockers are a favourite way for consumers to store and share their pictures and videos with friends and  families. Regrettably these services are sometimes exploited by criminals who  randomly distribute links to child sexual abuse material. INHOPE Members are  tackling this trend by working in partnership with legitimate hosting businesses to have the material removed as quickly as possible. The infographic also shows the geographical span of INHOPE Members with 92% of confirmed child sexual abuse material traced to services covered by the INHOPE network.

Infographic 4:Commercialvs.non-commercial

Commercial refers to websites hosting or giving access to  Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) which require payment for further access. Non-Commercial refers to free access. FYI, those charts are of significant importance to us, especially in the light of our work with the European Financial Coalition against Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children Online (EFC). The EFC’s mission is to take action on the payment and ICT systems that  are used to run these illegal/ criminal operations.

Infographic 5: Notice and takedown

This is the process where illegal content is removed from  the Internet. It clearly shows that the reported CSAM content is in the vast majority of cases removed within a week. The time spans may be longer in  duration when dealing with foreign entities and because of time zone differences



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