The meeting started with an overview of the stakeholders with which the Czech Safer Internet Centre cooperates, in addition to updates on its current activities. Currently the Czech SIC is composed of two consortium members: The CZ.NIC Association, the administrator of the Czech national domain, coordinates the SIC and operates the awareness centre as well as the hotline service (STOPonline.cz). The second consortium partner, Linka bezpečí, provides helpline services. People in Need, a humanitarian aid and human rights organisation, will also become a consortium partner in the upcoming project. In addition, Dětské krizové centrum (Child Crises Centre) will join the consortium to provide helpline counselling services and ambulance crisis assistance services.
The Czech SIC has extensive relationships with various stakeholders within the country and also reports that it brings together an Advisory Board that establishes a connection with partners from the non-profit, commercial, public and academic sectors. In addition, the SIC works in close cooperation with various ministries and government agencies.
Operated by the CZ.NIC Association, the awareness centre awareness centre carries out various activities and produces useful resources. More specifically, since 2020, the awareness centre has focused on educating teachers, parents, and the educational community in general through the CZ.NIC Academy, which currently includes over 150 courses. In addition, the awareness centre also produces various audio-visual content such as TV series, short films and videos, social media spots, video tutorials, audiobooks, interviews and podcasts. Among these, #martyisdead, an eight-episode thriller TV series inspired by real cases of cyberbullying, was noted to be the first Czech series to win the prestigious international EMMY Award.
Another highlight of the work of the Awareness Centre was the ON-LINE ZOO book which introduces the youngest readers to the basics of safe behaviour on the internet. The book was translated in 2018 from the German original Der Online-Zoo developed by the Austrian SIC. In 2021, the Czech SIC also produced a poetry version of the ON-LINE ZOO.
The youth panel of the Czech SIC currently consists of 23 young people, representing eleven of the fourteen regions across the Czech Republic. It was also noted that a gender balance is reached as the current group consists of eleven boys and twelve girls with an average age of 17 years old. The youth panel meets on a regular basis (every two months) and provides a space for children and young people to express their views, and exchange knowledge and experiences concerning modern technologies. Besides discussing prominent topics such as cyberbullying and internet safety, their agenda also consists of new topics reflecting emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) and the internet of things (IoT).
Linka bezpečí is the oldest and the best-known child helpline in the Czech Republic and it has been a part of the Czech SIC consortium since 2019. Linka bezpečí provides telephone, email and chat helpline services to children and youth. As a general helpline service, Linka bezpečí provides counselling on a variety of topics not only limited to online safety issues. However, the helpline noted during the meeting that, given the current technological advancements and the prevalence of technology in the general public’s daily lives, the online safety issues have been increasing and have become an overarching concept. Hence, online safety can be considered relevant across many topics and issues that Linka bezpečí works on.
Since 2018, the CZ.NIC Association has provided the hotline services (stoponline.cz) as part of its computer security incident response team (CSIRT) department, which cooperates closely with Czech internet service providers, webmasters and various web portals such as Rajce.net, Seznam.cz and Amateri.cz.
Stoponline.cz service was established based on a memorandum with the National Centre Against Organized Crime to allow reporting of inappropriate content, especially child sexual abuse material, which receives over 3,000 reports a year. Besides the online form for reporting illegal online content, stoponline.cz also has a mobile application available through both Google Play and the Apple App Store. Both applications, as well as the web form, allow for anonymous reporting of illegal content.
Further information about the Czech Safer Internet Centre more generally can be found on the Better Internet for Kids (BIK) public portal, including links to its national website and other contact information. Similar information can be found on the BIK portal for all Safer Internet Centres in Europe.