Building a sustainable digital future with the European Safer Internet Centres

In these times of intense debates on the future of Europe, the Insafe/INHOPE network of European Safer Internet Centres reflects on past achievements, current challenges, as well as on the road ahead.

We are a European network of Safer Internet Centres, and we pursue a twofold objective that lies at the very heart of EU action: safeguarding and promoting the best interests of children and young people, while at the same time building a sustainable and ethical digital future, and creating an inclusive digital society. Since 1999, the European Union has been at the forefront of the protection of children's digital rights through the Safer Internet/Better Internet for Kids programme.

In these times of intense debates on the Future of Europe, we want to reassert the importance of making the internet a place of culture, opportunities and empowerment for our children. For years, our network has been striving to foster a high level of digital and media literacy among young European citizens and to raise awareness of the risks they may encounter online, thereby tackling major issues affecting children and young people's wellbeing (such as cyberbullying, harmful content, the dissemination of child sexual abuse material (CSAM), and so on), but also key wider societal issues.

Indeed, the importance of digital technology has significantly increased over time, and so have the concerns associated with it. Today, some of these threaten to undermine the foundations of European democracy and the cohesion among Member States. As a result, the European Union is seeking to increase its overall resilience to digital risks. We believe that educating and raising awareness among young Europeans is key to addressing fundamental concerns such as bridging the digital divide (whether it is geographical, financial or gender-based), tackling online hate speech and disinformation, preventing data leaks, and much more.

By giving children and young people the tools to mitigate the online risks and maximise the opportunities offered by the digital transformation, we can ensure they become responsible digital citizens.

But doing so is a long-term endeavour, due to the highly dynamic nature of the digital landscape, and it requires sustained efforts over time to respond in the most appropriate ways to emerging trends and issues.

It is our responsibility to make sure that young Europeans are able to cope with the challenges of the 21st century, and to thrive in the digital revolution. Therefore, we call for all organisations, decision-makers and citizens to spread the word and support a fair, inclusive and empowering Digital Europe.

For further information, download our information sheet or read it below.

Safer Internet Centres - information sheet - May 2019

Related news

Fighting disinformation in the EU – Progress and lessons learned

On Friday, 14 June 2019, the European Commission (EC) and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the Commission reported on the progress achieved in the fight against disinformation and the main lessons drawn from the European elections, as a contribution to the discussions among EU leaders ahead of the European Council.

Marking the International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression

Tuesday, 4 June 2019 marks the International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression. On this occasion, the BIK Team reflects on the violence children and young people are exposed to in the digital world, and on the coordinated effort carried out at European level to put an end to these.

The 2018 Better Internet for Kids and #SaferInternet4EU report is out

The Better Internet for Kids (BIK) and #SaferInternet4EU review of the year 2018 was released on Tuesday, 5 February 2019, on the occasion of Safer Internet Day (SID). It gives an extensive summary of the activities undertaken under the BIK umbrella and in the framework of the #SaferInternet4EU campaign.

Together for a better internet - on Safer Internet Day and beyond!

If it's the second day of the second week of the second month of the year, it means it's Safer Internet Day! Today, over 140 countries across the globe celebrate it in their own way, under the unifying slogan of "Together for a better internet", calling on all stakeholders to join together and play their part in creating a better internet for everyone, in particular for children and young people.