Citizen Groups: Empower ISPs and all of society vs child porn instead of sanctions | Global News
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Citizen Groups: Empower ISPs and all of society vs child porn instead of sanctions

/ 02:43 PM February 22, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Consumer advocacy groups urged government to empower telecommunications companies and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to work with all sectors to stop child pornography instead of more sanctions and regulations.

In reaction to government moves to impose sanctions for failure to fulfill duties mandated under Republic Act 9775 or the Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009, CitizenWatch Philippines Co-Convenor Atty. Tim Abejo said, “The government should empower the telcos and ISPs as allies in fighting the societal menace of Online Sexual Exploitation and Abuse of Children (OSEAC) instead of imposing more sanctions and even more regulations.”

Empower ISPs and all of society vs child porn

Abejo said, “The best approach would be to work together in a systemic, whole-of-society approach that will harness all the technology and resources of government, law enforcement agencies, the academe, global and local NGOs, and technology experts to develop the responsive policies, and digital tools, in developing and implementing safety programs.”

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“Harmonizing government laws to give telcos, ISPs and other online platforms enough authority to hunt down and purge harmful websites while protecting the data privacy of individual consumers will be more constructive,” Abejo said.

The President and his Cabinet has directed legislators to prioritize bills that would expand the inter-agency council on child pornography, exempt trafficking of persons from the Anti-Wiretapping Law, and impose more responsibilities on tourism establishments and ISPs to stop child pornography.

Globe Telecom has reported ongoing investments reaching US$2.7 million in their content filtering system which blocked a total of 2,521 domains with child porn related content as part of its ‘PlayItRight’ advocacy program targeting online child pornography and illegal content. Globe is also a partner of the “Kabataang Digital” project of the National Privacy Commission (NPC) to provide age-appropriate support and help children understand the nature of privacy and the implications of the digital environment on their privacy rights.

Globe’s Chief Sustainability Officer and Senior Vice President for Corporate Communications Yoly Crisanto said, “As a company whose business is connecting many Filipinos to the internet, Globe sees paramount importance in keeping its customers, particularly children, safe online.”

Converge ICT Solutions Inc. for its part installed a firewall system and Secure Domain Name Solution to block websites with child pornography material and malicious content. The broadband provider coordinates with the Department of Information and Communications Technology, The National Telecommunications Commission and the Department of social Welfare and Development to implement their Child Online Safeguarding Policy.

In a separate statement, Bantay Konsyumer, Kalsada, Kuryente (BK3) Convenor Louie Montemar said, “All consumers must unite to eliminate all lascivious sites destroying the lives of our children. We must remove this evil from cyberspace and must be vigilant every time we and our children go online.”

“As netizens, we have a responsibility to report child-pornography or other sites instigating terrorism, disinformation, and piracy of intellectual property,” Montemar said.

“We believe that civil society and government combining forces with the telcos and ISPs is the optimal strategy to attack the OSEAC problem,” Montemar said.

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TAGS: Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009, CitizenWatch Philippines, ISP
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