About Insafe

Insafe is a European network, comprised of 31 national awareness centres (27 of the EU member states, plus Iceland, Norway, Russia and Serbia). Every national Centre implements awareness and educational campaigns, runs a helpline, and works closely with youth to ensure an evidence-based, multi-stakeholder approach to creating a better internet.

Mission statement

The mission of the Insafe cooperation network is to empower children and young people to use the internet, as well as other online and mobile technologies, positively, safely and effectively. The network calls for shared responsibility for the protection of the rights and needs of citizens, in particular children and youths, by government, educators, parents, media, industry and all other relevant actors. Insafe partners work closely together to share best practice, information and resources. The network interacts with industry, schools and families in the aim of empowering people to bridge the digital divide between home and school and between generations.

Insafe partners monitor and address emerging trends, while seeking to reinforce the image of the web as a place to learn. They endeavour to raise awareness about reporting harmful or illegal content and services. Through close cooperation between partners and other actors, Insafe aims to raise Internet safety-awareness standards and support the development of information literacy for all.

Awareness Centres 

Each country in the Insafe network has a national Awareness Centre who is responsible for implementing campaigns, coordinating actions, developing synergy at the national level and working in close co-operation with all relevant actors at European, regional and local level. 

Find an awareness centre in your country.

For an overview of the work of the Insafe Awareness Centres, download the information sheet.

Helplines

National helplines respond to the questions and concerns of young people linked to their experiences online or the harmful or illegal online content they encounter.

Find a helpline in your country.

For an overview of the work of the Insafe Helplines, download the information sheet.

Hotlines

Hotlines allow members of the public to report illegal content on the internet. The hotlines then deal with the reports by passing them on to the appropriate body (Internet Service Providers, the police, hotlines in other countries) in accordance with their operating rules. This helps to reduce the flow of illegal content and contributes to the effective protection of internet users. Hotlines are coordinated by INHOPE funded by the Safer Internet Programme.

Find out how to report illegal content.

Safer Internet Day

The Insafe network organises Safer Internet Day, which has taken place each February since 2004 and also involves countries outside Europe.

Find out more about Safer Internet Day.

Safer Internet Programme

In recent years, the EU has coordinated and supported efforts to make the internet a safer place, especially for children. These efforts are ongoing and in a five-year project (2009-2013), under the umbrella of the Safer Internet Programme, €55 million will be used to fight illegal content and harmful behaviours on the Web such as bullying or grooming. 

The Safer Internet Programme encompasses Web 2.0 communication services, such as social networking, and co-funds projects to: 

  • ensure awareness of children, parents and teachers on how to stay safe online;
  • provide citizens with national contact points to report illegal and harmful content and conduct, especially on child sexual abuse material and grooming;
  • foster self-regulatory initiatives in the field;
  • stimulate children to become involved in creating a safer online environment;
  • establish a knowledge base on the use of new technologies and related risks by bringing together researchers engaged in online child safety at European level.

Of the €55 million budget, almost a half (48 per cent), should serve to ensure public awareness, 34 per cent to fight against illegal content and tackle harmful conduct online, 10 per cent to promote a safer online environment and 8 per cent to establish a knowledge base. 

The programme has four main actions: 

  • fighting against illegal content
  • tackling harmful content
  • promoting a safer environment
  • raising awareness

Further information is available from the Digital Agenda website.