"Along with the progress, digital technologies also bring numerous adversities to children, such as internet addiction, online sexual abuse and exploitation, phishing, cyberbullying, sextortion, catfishing, revenge porn, gambling and exposure to sexual contents," Anil Raghuvanshi, the President of ChildSafeNet, stated. He added, "children and young people have a right to be protected online, and it is the same as their right to be protected offline". He urged the government, private sector, schools and parents to invest in making the internet safer.
Set in a historical place, the event was open to the public and attracted children, young people, parents and teachers. During the day, cyber safety messages were disseminated through interesting dramas, hot debates, melodious musical performances, stand-up comedy and cyber safety discourses. Bal Vatavaran Kendra Nepal and students from Blue Bird School, Lalitpur, conveyed cyber safety messages through dramas, whereas, Sushant Ghimire from Red Circle Creative Solutions performed unplugged versions of popular Nepali songs. Similarly, Sujal Poudel from Apex Life School performed a stand-up comedy act on the online habits of Nepali children and young people.
During the event, ChildSafeNet announced its recent partnership with the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) to promote the Nepal portal for reporting child sexual abuse imagery. He informed that anyone can report anonymously child sexual photos or videos found on the internet in Nepali or other languages by clicking report.iwf.org.uk/np.
Speaking in the event, Police Inspector Umesh Sah informed that the Nepal Police has established the Central Cyber Bureau in Kathmandu to tackle cybercrimes. Likewise, representing CWIN Nepal, Madhav Lohani informed that online abuses and exploitation can be reported to Child Helpline's toll-free number 1098.
In collaboration with ChildSafeNet, Safer Internet Day 2020 was also celebrated in other parts of the country. Love Green Nepal organised two cyber safety training sessions at Azad Secondary School, Baluwa and at the organisation's training centre at Panchkhal. Similarly, Veda Shreejansheel Sanstha organised two awareness events, including an oratory competition in Sunwal, Nawalparasi. Likewise, ChildSafeNet trainers conducted cyber safety training sessions at Holy Temple Higher Secondary School, Chhampi and Janajagriti Higher Secondary School, Budhanilkantha. Earlier, as a preparation for Safer Internet Day, ChildSafeNet conducted a four-day cyber safety training of trainers in Lalitpur from Thursday, 23 to Sunday, 26 January 2020.
Safer Internet Day is celebrated in over 170 countries each February to promote the safe and positive use of digital technologies for children and young people, and to inspire a national conversation on the role we all play in helping to create a better and safer online community.