INHOPE | INHOPE launches EU Insights Publication 2021
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INHOPE launches EU Insights Publication 2021

The INHOPE network of hotlines has established an effective and well-recognised mechanism for the rapid removal of CSAM within Europe. INHOPE member hotlines enable the public to anonymously report online material they suspect may be illegal. Across the INHOPE network, over 200 hotline analysts work every day to find and remove this content from the internet and to share data with law enforcement so they can identify victims and perpetrators. The INHOPE Network consists of 29 member hotlines from European states that are co-funded by the European Commission.

European hotlines submit data on reports received quarterly. Today INHOPE is publishing the first EU Insights publication which provides a statistical overview of the public reports received by European hotlines for 2021. European hotlines in the INHOPE network received a total of 1.218.420 reports in 2021. This is an increase of 38.000 compared to 2020.

The vast majority of all processed reports continue to be from websites publicly displayed on the open Internet, but hotlines noted increases in reports of content from social media platforms and onion/tor sites. Of the total reports received, more than half were indicated to be CSAM. The primary topic that INHOPE EC-funded member hotlines receive reports on is child sexual abuse material, but they also process reports on more than 30 other topics. The types of reports received depend on the mandate of the organisation and all report types accepted by hotlines are outlined on their website. The unique working conditions of 2020 and 2021 and their effects on hotline workflow cannot be overstated.

When examining the reporting data, it is important to acknowledge this work was done while adhering to regulations imposed due to COVID-19 and most changes noted in the data over time may have their root causes in effects caused by the pandemic. Nevertheless, the INHOPE network remained resilient and adaptable during this timeframe and all hotlines gave their best efforts to remain operational even in cases of significantly reduced capacity in the face of record-breaking reporting levels. Their tireless work has resulted in the removal of illegal material online which depicts the sexual abuse of real children. The collaboration of INHOPE member hotlines and their commitment to participate in information exchange and find solutions to at times impossible challenges has been commendable in 2021.

Access the 2021 EU Insights report here.

INHOPE launches EU Insights Publication 2021

European hotlines in the INHOPE network received a total of 1.218.420 reports in 2021