Warning: The following discusses abuse and may be disturbing to some users. You may click the sign now button at any time to bring up the petition and complete the action.
Technology can be a force for good in kids’ lives, but without proper regulation, it can also devastate a child’s future.
Joy is one of those children. Growing up in the Philippines, she was just 10 years old when she was pressured to strip naked in front of a camera. The sexual abuse that Joy suffered was streamed live over the internet to a paying audience. This would continue for the next seven years of her life.
“I thought to myself, why is there a camera? Then she told us to take off our clothes” - Joy, now 17, speaking about the beginnings of her abuse.
Joy is not alone. Since 2016, online child sexual abuse has risen by over a third and over 50% of children rescued are 12 years old or younger. There are children like Joy across all countries, but poverty is a significant driver in pushing family members to sell kids for sexual exploitation online and the consequences of abuse, like increased drop-out rates, are felt the hardest by children already living in poverty or in conflict.
This crime against children happens because both the paying audience and the perpetrators of abuse feel they can exploit kids online without consequences.
In 2018 US technology giants signed on to the Paris Call for Trust and Security in CyberSpace which reaffirmed that the same rights that people have offline must also be protected online.
Now we are asking companies like Facebook, Cisco, and Microsoft to follow through on that promise and put in place security measures to better prevent the horrific abuse of children so that no more kids like Joy have their childhoods taken from them.
Will you call on Facebook, Cisco, Microsoft and other businesses and tech companies to better protect children against abuse? Sign the petition now.