IGF 2020 OF #50 Technology and Governance – opportunities and risks for safety of children online

Friday, 6th November, 2020 (14:10 UTC) - Friday, 6th November, 2020 (15:10 UTC)
Room 3
About this Session
The session will focus on the key aspects around technology and governance that are shaping our ability to effectively respond to threats and harms faced by children online, such as: access to technology tools to protect children online, regulatory frameworks on digital platforms and their interplay with safety considerations, unequal capacities across the globe to prevent and respond to online threats and the role of international collaboration.


Other - 60 Min
Format description: Open Forum session - mix of birds of a feather and a panel session with an open floor Q&A component.


End Violence is the largest and most diverse public-private coalition focused on accelerating progress towards SDG 16.2: ending all forms of violence against children by 2030. It acts as a global platform for evidence-based advocacy, action and investments.

Through Safe Online, End Violence is making investments in organisations designing tools, programs and technology solutions to tackle online Child Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (CSEA). Since 2016, $44 million were invested in projects focused on building national, regional and global capacity to end online CSEA making impact in over 50 countries. At the same time, through generated knowledge and learning, End Violence/Safe Online is working with global leaders and organisations to ensure a continued focus on child online safety, placing it high in key global policy debates. 

Open Forum: While digital technologies have created risks for children online, they play a critical part in our efforts to prevent and respond to online CSEA. Given the exponential growth of abuse of children online and the speed at which new threats are emerging, there is a global consensus that with right regulatory frameworks and policies, and collaboration between main sectors, technology is the key to protecting children online.  

With its latest Safe Online investment round of $10 million, End Violence made another significant contribution to the global fight against online CSEA, welcoming 14 new grantees with cutting-edge projects into its Safe Online community.  Through new technologies, these projects will develop the knowledge and capacity of law enforcement, public authorities and other groups fighting online CSEA across the globe – especially in countries where there is currently little related infrastructure in place.   

Key themes/questions: Together with our End Violence/Safe Online partners and grantees we will discuss key aspects around technology and governance that are shaping our ability to effectively respond to threats faced by children online, including:

  1. The role technology plays in the global response to online CSEA, the types of technology currently in use, as well as variety of ways it can be applied;
  2. Regulatory frameworks that are enabling or challenging the use of tech for child online safety and the tension between privacy and safety;
  3. Unequal capacities across the world to access and use technological tools, and effective approaches to building that capacity; and,
  4. The role of national and international cooperation and cross sector collaboration in creating a sustainable global ecosystem for prevention and response to online CSEA.

Context: 1 in 3 internet users worldwide is a child. At the same time, in any single moment, an estimated 750,000 predators are looking to sexually exploit and abuse children online. When you couple these figures with the fact that digital technologies were not made with children’s safety in mind, making the abuse easier to produce, share, hide, and trade - you begin to get a picture of the threats children face in the digital world, including: child grooming on social media and gaming platforms, coercing and blackmailing children for sexual purposes, “on demand” live streaming of child sexual abuse for as little as $15, and producing, sharing and consuming Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM).

COVID19 has only exacerbated this situation and helped expose the existing pandemic of online Child Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (CSEA). Law enforcement authorities and reporting hotlines have seen a striking increase in the amount of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) being shared online. In April 2020 alone, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) registered 4 million reports of suspected CSAM online compared to 1 million for the same period last year.


End Violence Global Partnership

  • Baroness Beeban Kidron OBE, Founder and Chair of 5Rights Foundation
  • John Tanagho, Director of the Center to End Online Sexual Exploitation of Children, International Justice Mission
  • Signy Arnason, Associate Executive Director, Canadian Center for Child Protection
  • Emilio Puccio, Coordinator, European Parliament Intergroup on Children's Rights
Onsite Moderator

Marija Manojlovic, Safe Online Lead, End Violence

Online Moderator

Marija Manojlovic, Safe Online Lead, End Violence


Trang Ho Morton, Safe Online Grant Portfolio Manager, End Violence


GOAL 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
GOAL 17: Partnerships for the Goals