Children deserve a secure and safe internet

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Children deserve a secure and safe internet

Dear Member of the European Parliament,

I am joining 124 civil society organisations in calling to oppose the ‘Regulation laying down rules to prevent and combat child sexual abuse’ (CSA Regulation) and to pursue an alternative which is compatible with EU fundamental rights.

The United Nations and UNICEF state, online privacy is vital for young people’s development and self-expression, and children should not be subjected to generalised surveillance. The UK Royal College of Psychiatrists highlights that snooping is harmful for children, and that policies based in empowerment and education are more effective.

If passed, this law will turn the internet into a space that is dangerous for everyone’s privacy, security and free expression. This includes the very children that the legislation aims to protect.

Privacy, security and free expression are important for providing confidential support to abuse survivors, for developing our autonomy and sense of self, and for accessing and enjoying almost all our other human and civil rights. When you fundamentally undermine how the internet works, you make it less safe for everyone.

If passed, the CSA Regulation proposal would also harm whistleblowers, activists in political opposition, labour unions, people seeking abortions in places where it is criminalised, media freedom, marginalised groups and many others. This will set a dangerous precedent for mass surveillance around the world.

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