In the media

What next for online safety laws?

Internet Watch Foundation

19 September 2023

PA Consulting's Natalia Greene, children’s online safety expert , discusses the future of online safety laws with WF Head of Policy and Public Affairs Mike Tunks on the Internet Watch Foundation Podcast.

As the Online Safety Bill becomes the Online Safety Act, Natalia Greene and IWF Head of Policy and Public Affairs Mike Tunks explain this landmark piece of legislation and the effect it may have on everyday life.

Commenting on the importance of this legislation and why its needed, Natalia explains: "Since 2019 there's been a rise in the reports of child sexual abuse material online. There were 17million in 2019 and 32 million in 2022, so that's an 87 per cent increase. I think those numbers alone tell us we're not doing enough about this this issue"

She adds: "I focus on child exploitation and abuse online because at PA Consulting we do a lot of work in this area but we know that other online harms are also becoming very common. So, OFCOM's recent sate of the nation reports shows that 6 in 10 people are experiencing some potential online harm every month."

When asked about what the Bill covers, Natalia says: "The online safety seeks to tackle two buckets; there's illegal content and content that is harmful to children. A key thing to recognise is that the regulator is not looking at individual pieces of content. The approach is all about looking at the systems and processes that online service providers have in place to address risks and reduce exposure to harm."

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