top of page
  • Protect Children

Protecting Children from Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Online: Debating Europe


On 28.11.2022 Protect Children's Executive Director Nina Vaaranen Valkonen together with other experts in the field of child protection gathered in a Panel Debate organized by Debating Europe to talk about the topic:

How can we protect children from sexual abuse and exploitation online?

The panel elaborated on the right working model to effectively address online child sexual exploitation and abuse (OCSEA) and how to adapt to an evolving landscape, as technology evolves and plays an increasing part both in aiding perpetrators and in providing solutions. Furthermore, the panel talked about approaches, from technology innovations to public awareness campaigns or whole-of-society responses, that can help prevent child sexual abuse before it happens and deter this illegal conduct.

Joining remotely, Nina elaborated on several important points to effectively #ProtectChildren, including the need to teach children digital safety skills starting at a young age, the importance of safe adults' presence in children's digital daily lives and the fundamental role of a holistic approach to protect children from sexual violence, including through offender-focused prevention.

“We need to find ways to prevent the crimes before they happen”
“It’s like a river. If we are picking up and saving the children from the river, we can continue doing that forever, but if we go upstream and look for where the children are falling in the river, then we are making progress.” Nina Vaaranen-Valkonen, Executive Director, Protect Children

Members or the Panel


  • Antonio Labrador, Team Leader, Fight Against Child Sexual Abuse at the European Commission’s DG HOME

  • Almudena Lara, Child Safety Senior Manager at Google

  • Denton Howard, Executive Director at INHOPE, the global network combatting online Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM)

  • Nina Vaaranen-Valkonen, Deputy Manager and Legal Specialist at Suojellaan Lapsia ry (Protect Children Finland)

  • Joe Litobarski, Editor-in-Chief at Debating Europe (moderator)

About Debating Europe


Debating Europe aims for a more sustainable, inclusive and forward-looking Europe. The online discussion platform is based on a simple model: citizens ask questions, policymakers and experts respond. The site has engaged more than 6 million users and built a social media following of more than 271,000 people from around the world. Over 3,000 key policymakers and experts have answered over 200,000 questions.


bottom of page