Facebook Responsible for 94% of Child Sex Abuse Images Reported to Tech Firms
- Facebook was responsible for 94% of the 69 million child sex abuse images reported by US technology companies last year
- The figures emerged as seven countries, including the UK, published a statement on Sunday warning of the impact of end-to-end encryption on public safety online
- Facebook has previously announced plans to fully encrypt communications in its Messenger app, as well as its Instagram Direct service – on top of WhatsApp, which is already encrypted – meaning no one apart from the sender and recipient can read or modify messages
- The social media site said the changes are designed to improve user privacy on all of its platforms, but law enforcement agencies fear the move will have a devastating impact on their ability to target paedophiles and protect children online
- Some 16.9 million referrals were made by US tech firms to the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) last year, including 69 million images of children being abused – up 50% on the previous year.
- Some 94% of the reports, which include the worst category of images, came from Facebook, Home Office officials said