Civil Hotline

Child Focus as a civil hotline for reporting child sexual abuse material

Child Focus, the Foundation for Missing and Sexually Exploited Children, is a private organisation, recognised as being of public utility, which has been operational since March 31st 1998.

 

The Foundation’s mission, both at national and international level, is firstly to actively support investigations into the disappearance, abduction or sexual exploitation of children, and secondly to help prevent and combat these phenomena.

Child Focus always acts solely in the interests of children. To help combat the sexual exploitation of minors, the Foundation is also involved in action against child sexual abuse material (child pornography) on the Internet

 

In 2002, Child Focus decided to set up a civil hotline for reporting such images. This fits the European Commission’s efforts to prevent illegal content on the Internet, and was thus created with the Commission’s support.

www.stopchildporno.be is a Belgian non-police hotline. Child Focus does not conduct investigations itself, but has a co-operation agreement with the police and the judiciary. Together with the police and the judiciary, Child Focus wants to ensure that as many images as possible of sexual abuse of children disappear from the Internet.

The objective of the civil hotline and the information provided on the Child Focus website is to increase Internet users’ sense of responsibility by providing them useful information about the problem and allowing citizens to report such images to Child Focus, anonymously if they wish, with the ultimate goal of ensuring their removal from the Internet.

 

Reporting images via the Child Focus hotline can be done anonymously, and hotline staff are bound by professional secrecy. If investigation by the well-trained staff of Child Focus shows that the reported images are in fact child sexual abuse material, the provenance of the images is checked. If the website is hosted in Belgium, the Belgian authorities are brought in to conduct further investigation into the abuse itself. At the same time, a request is also made to the Belgian Internet service providers to take down the images. If the website in question is hosted abroad, the report is transfered to the competent authorities of that country. If the images are hosted in a country where a hotline like Child Focus and member of Inhope exists (link to " What is Inhope and what is the procedure abroad? "), the report will be transmitted to that hotline. If there is no Inhope hotline active in the country, the report will be send to their law enforcement by the Belgian Federal Police. Please be informed that you can also report the material to the Federal Police. 

↪ What is Inhope and what is the procedure abroad?

© 2019 Child Focus | Houba - de Strooperlaan 292 | B-1020 Brussel | Tel : + 32/ (0)2 475 44 11 | childfocus.be | info@childfocus.be | Child Focus is a member of “Missing Children Europe” (MCE)