On 7th April, the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) (part of the UK Safer Internet Centre) launched its 2013 annual report and revealed the latest trends in assessing and removing child sexual abuse images from the internet. Last year the IWF assessed more than 50,000 reports to its hotline and saw a 31% increase in reports processed compared to 2012. It identified 13,182 webpages containing child sexual abuse imagery from 51,186 reports.
Of the 13,182 webpages:
- Over half (51%) showed the rape or sexual torture of a child or children.
- Over 80% were of victims aged 10 or under.
- The vast majority of the victims were girls (76%). 10% were boys and 9% showed both genders.
- 24% of the images and videos were being sold on a commercial basis.
- Most of the images and videos were hosted in North America (54%) with 43% hosted in Europe (including Russia).
The UK still leads the world at removing this criminal imagery; less than 1% of all the child sexual abuse images and videos identified were hosted in the UK. However, due to a rise in the number of UK businesses’ websites hacked to host folders of child sexual abuse images, the number of UK- hosted images increased from 73 webpages in 2012 to 92 webpages in 2013. To read the full 2013 annual report click here.