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November 23, 2023

Discord steps up bid to rid internet of ‘appalling’ child sexual abuse imagery

  • Discord has stepped up its efforts to prevent the spread of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) by joining the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF).
  • Being an IWF member, means Discord will be able to deploy IWF’s services including their URL List and Keywords List, as well as its Non-Photographic URL and Hash Lists.
  • Discord will also join a group of “trusted flaggers” for the IWF, meaning they can fast track any suspected CSAM they discover straight to the IWF’s hotline for a rapid assessment.
  • In their latest Transparency Report from the second quarter of 2023, Discord revealed they have removed servers for Child Safety concerns proactively 95% of the time, and servers with suspected child sexual abuse material 99% of the time.
  • John Redgrave, Vice President of Trust & Safety at Discord Inc. reported: “Safety continues to be one of our most important investments, and we are grateful to work together with the IWF to help combat child sexual abuse material online and create a safer internet for all.”
  • For more, please visit the IWF website.

WhatsApp messages show teachers mocking vulnerable pupils

  • Teachers used swearing and poo emojis to criticise vulnerable primary school pupils in a WhatsApp group chat, with messages dating back to 2018.
  • The existence of the chat between staff was first revealed last year, but the affected pupils’ parents were not informed.
  • The local authority has apologised for the situation and said the incident was dealt with through the council’s disciplinary procedure.
  • An independent review ruled some of the messages were “disparaging” but did not put the children at harm and the council was right not to tell parents about them.
  • It is understood that the independent reviewer of the council’s handling of the situation did not speak to the commissioner’s office during their investigation.
  • The director of education and children’s services at the council said he was sorry the incident had occurred and reported it was both “unprofessional and unfortunate.”
  • For more, please visit the BBC News website.

A guide to avoid being scammed this Black Friday

  • The PSNI have warned that some Black Friday deals may not be as they seem and have shared tips to prevent being scammed.
  • A PSNI spokesperson reported: “Make sure a website is authentic by carefully checking if the address is spelled correctly. Ideally, type it in rather than clicking on a link in an email, text or post.”
  • They recommend to “Make sure payment pages are secure by checking that addresses begin with ‘https’ (‘s’ is for secure) and there’s a closed padlock in the address bar.” and “Log out of the web page or app when payment is completed. Simply closing it may not log you out automatically.”
  • Importantly, they warned “If it’s a fraud, your bank may not be able to recover or refund your money. If you can, pay by credit card.”
  • The spokesperson recommended that shoppers check the website is verified before shopping: “Don’t click on links in emails, texts or posts that you’re not expecting, and don’t open unexpected email attachments.”
  • They also recommended to ensure goods are real before purchasing them: “Fakes are of inferior quality, contravene copyright law and affect the livelihoods of workers who make the real thing. They can also be unsafe in use.”
  • For more, please visit the Belfast Telegraph website.