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  • Protect Children

Matilda Sandvik, Child Rights Specialist, appears on Finnish television news program, Efter Nio

NEWS


On 5 December 2022, Matilda Sandvik, Child Rights Specialist at Protect Children, appeared in an interview on the Swedish language Finnish television news program, Efter Nio, to discuss the changing nature of sexual violence against children, and what we are doing to keep children safe online and offline.




[Matilda Sandvik's interview begins at 31:00 minutes]




Matilda began by sharing some insight into how sexual violence against children can occur, not only physically but also in ways facilitated by technology.


Increasingly, crimes of sexual violence against children occur partially or completely via the internet, such as through social media platforms.


Matilda emphasised that no matter where the abuse occurs, the effect on the child can be equally harmful.


Protect Children has conducted a research survey on people who search for material depicting sexual abuse of children to understand more about the issue. The survey was published in 21 languages on dark web search engines, and has been answered by over 20,000 people.


The results of the research survey show that many people who view child sexual abuse material do not stop there. 40% of the respondents said that they also directly contact children online after watching the abuse material.


A more positive result of the research shows that around half of the respondents want to change their behaviour and stop viewing child sexual abuse material. This finding underlines the importance of providing effective prevention resources to help offenders stop their offending behaviour.



Matilda explained how it is also important to teach children how to stay safe as they explore digital environments. Protect Children's digital traffic light model is an easy way for children to learn essential digital safety skills. The model helps children understand the idea that different situations and content online require different responses to stay safe.


Giving children a simple three step action plan that guides them to act when encountering different situations and content online helps children stay safe.


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