IWF Reveals Twitter Responsible for Around 50% of Child Abuse Content on Social Media


According to a UK-based organisation, Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), around half of the child abuse content over the social media network is being shared openly on micro-blogging platform Twitter.

The report revealed nearly 49 percent of the images, videos and URL links found on social media, search engines and cloud services in the past three years were on Twitter. This subsequently made up to 1,396 of the total 2,835 incidents.

This frightening revelation indicates that numerous child abuse images and videos slipped through Twitter’s filters and were available for public to see.

The IWF also disclosed that the organisation helps reduce the availability of online sexual abuse content, specifically child sexual abuse content available anywhere digitally in the world. IWF’s majority of the works is dedicated on the removal of child sexual abuse images and videos.

IWF quoted on its website – “We search for child sexual abuse images and videos and offer a place for the public to report them anonymously. We then have them removed.”
Following Twitter, Microsoft’s Bing search engine was second in the IWF report. It accounted for around 604 incidents recorded between 2016 and 2018. The list is further followed by Amazon with 375 and Google with 348.

The report also stated – “The IWF found 72 incidents of abuse being openly hosted on Facebook, 18 on its sister site Instagram and 22 on YouTube.”

Reacting to this, a Twitter spokesperson said – “We have serious concerns about the accuracy of these figures and the metrics used to produce them. We will continue to work with the IWF to address their concerns and improve the accuracy of their data.”

To which Susie Hargreaves OBE, CEO of the IWF asserted that IWF’s data is accurate and recorded fairly and consistently regardless of where it finds child sexual abuse material.


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