IWF declares most extreme year on record at #BehindTheScreens Annual Report launch

30 Apr 2024 UK SIC

The Internet Watch Foundation, a partner at the UK Safer Internet Centre, found more child sexual abuse imagery in 2023 than any previous year – more than 275,000 webpages were actioned by the IWF Hotline. At the Foundation’s Annual Report launch in April, the IWF also revealed that thousands of ‘self-generated’ sexual images and videos of three to six-year-old children are now being found on the open internet.

This is the first time the Hotline reports on this type of abuse being inflicted upon children as young as three to six, who are being targeted by “opportunistic” predators who manipulate and coerce them into sexual activities online.

IWF CEO Susie Hargreaves OBE, presented the latest insights and data on the global fight against online child sexual abuse material at the event held at the Finsbury offices of IWF supporters Pinsent Masons.

Ms Hargreaves also warned the audience about the growing threat of sexually coerced extortion, or sextortion, as IWF analysts have seen an increasing number of reports of young people being victimised by this distressing crime, at the hands of organised crime gangs.

The audience also heard from global industry leaders about their latest innovations to combat online child exploitation and their work in partnership with the IWF.

You can watch the video from the event here, featuring:

  • Susie Hargreaves OBE, IWF CEO
  • Simon Staffell, IWF Board Member and UK Government Affairs Director at Microsoft  
  • Abbe Horswill, Human Rights and Social Impact Director at Marriott  
  • Brian Cimbolic, Chief Legal and Policy Officer at Public Interest Registry (PIR)  
  • Siggi Ragnarsson, Chief Executive Officer at Videntifier  

Read the full report at iwf.org.uk/annualreport2023.

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