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September 27, 2023

Teenager caught with CSAM hidden in fake calculator app

  • A teenager in England admitted to making indecent images of children after he was found with hundreds of category A, B and C images and videos on his mobile phone. 
  • The images were hidden in a mobile phone app disguised as a calculator, otherwise known as a decoy app. 
  • In total there were 48 category A pictures and 78 videos showing children aged four and 12.  
  • These images were only found after messaging into a Snapchat group labelled ‘horny chat’ under the guise of a 15-year-old female.  
  • The offender was issued a two-year community order, where he must complete 30 rehabilitation activity days, 120 hours of unpaid work and made subject to the sex offender’s register and placed under a sexual harm prevention order for five years. 
  • The judge stated that, I’m not banning him from using Snapchat. I just don’t think it’s enforceable nor do I think it will be entirely fair. He won’t be using Snapchat for this kind of thing again.”  
  • For more, please visit the Gazette Live website.  

EU reports disinformation is most active on X

  • A European Commission study on disinformation on social media platforms has been carried out by TrustLab, a disinformation monitoring start-up, as part of work to support the EU’s code of practice on disinformation.
  • The study examined over 6,000 unique social media posts across Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, X and YouTube.
  • Findings have suggested that social media platform X (formerly known as Twitter) has been reported to have the biggest proportion of disinformation of six big social media networks.
  • X withdrew from the code but will however be subject to the EU’s Digital Services Act (DSA) which regulates the conduct of the larger tech platforms.
  • The EU intends to turn the voluntary code into a code of conduct under the act.
  • For more, please visit the BBC News website.

Vapes ‘95% safer’ than cigarettes messaging backfired

  • Top health expert, Dr Mike McKean has reported the message that vaping is 95% safer than smoking has backfired, causing some children to vape.
  • Dr McKean treats children with lung conditions and is vice-president for policy at the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.
  • He states that the 2015 public messaging should have been clearer and that vapes are only for adults addicted to cigarettes, not children and young people.
  • He goes on to say that the 95% safe messaging was a “very unwise thing to have done and its opened the door to significant chaos”.
  • The Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak is expected to announce measures soon aimed at addressing youth vaping in England.
  • For more, please visit the BBC News website.

GCSEs: Difficult modern languages ‘putting pupils off’

  • This was one of the findings of a report into modern languages at Key Stage 3 (KS3) by the Education and Training Inspectorate (ETI).
  • There has been a significant reduction in the number of pupils studying languages at GCSE and A-level according to NI exams board, the Council for Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA).
  • The ETI report found several challenges, such as the perceived difficulty of studying a language, and achieving well in the subject means pupils may not choose the language at Key Stage 4.
  • The director of Initial Teacher Education at Queen’s University Belfast (QUB), Dr Ian Collen, stated that from his research, pupils were not choosing languages after KS3 due to the nature and content of external examinations and the way GCSEs in modern languages from CCEA are marked and graded.
  • Dr Collen argues that there is an urgent need to review these factors, and young people need to be assured that their learning will be appropriately rewarded.
  • For more, please visit the BBC News website.

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