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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Australia Tackles Revenge Porn With New eSafety Commission

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Australia will target the emerging threat of revenge porn with a beefed-up cybersafety watchdog as part of its ongoing war on domestic violence. A new tool has also been developed to remove the intimate photos from the internet.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull on Wednesday announced online a new eSafety Commissioner, who would now cover safety issues affecting adults as well as children.

The new eSafety Commissioner Julie Inman-Grant, previously Twitter’s manager of public policy and Microsoft’s global director of privacy and internet safety, said she hoped to usher in a “new era of online civility”. It comes as a Senate inquiry on the harm being done to Australian children through access to pornography on the internet is expected to report to Parliament today.

“At last count, there are over 3,000 web sites hosting so-called revenge porn around the world,” the Commissioner said. “Ninety per cent of these images were of women. “It is critical that we provide support and redress for victims.”

Ms Inman-Grant said a new online safety tool for removing consensual porn would be key in tackling the issue, in addition to prevention, protection and education efforts.

“These education efforts need to start as early as in the nursery and be reinforced in the classroom, in the lounge room, the bedroom and ultimately the boardroom to have the kind of societal and systemic impact that we need to make,” she said.

The new Commissioner will be an expanded version of the Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner.

The cybersafety watchdog will “take a lead role” in combating the non-consensual sharing of intimate images, otherwise known as revenge porn, the Prime Minister said.

Mr Turnbull also said the Federal Government would work with State and Territory Governments to develop a nationally consistent approach to “revenge porn” as part of its ongoing war on domestic violence.

“To every victim of domestic violence, your families and friends, to those who have been frightened and hurt, who are scarred today or are scarred by what has happened in the past, Australia stands with you,” he told the White Ribbon breakfast in Canberra on Wednesday.

“On this White Ribbon day, may you be sustained by this solidarity.

“We will not rest until you are safe.”

One of the campaign’s significant achievements so far was that the average time victims of domestic violence now waited for the official helpline had been reduced from 10.3 minutes to just 35.11 seconds.

But Mr Turnbull said the was “still so much more to do”. “Above all as parents we have to raise our sons from the earliest age to respect women, beginning with their mothers and sisters,” he said. “And we must encourage and teach our daughters to have greater self esteem.”

Online Source: News.com.au.

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