In Quarter II of 2020, RRT received 284 reports about illegal or harmful content on the Internet and the need for assistance to social network users keeps growing

2020 July 28 d.

In Quarter II of 2020, the Communications Regulatory Authority of the Republic of Lithuania (RRT) received 284 reports of illegal or harmful internet content via the internet hotline ”Clean Internet”. Internet users sent reports of internet information found and related to racism and xenophobia, pornography, sexual exploitation of children, violence or cyberbullying, and unauthorized disclosure of personal information. Compared to Quarter II of 2019 (173 notifications received), the number of reports increased by 64%. After investigating, follow-up actions were undertaken in 137 cases:

  • 39 reports of child sexual abuse images were forwarded to hotlines in other countries of members of the International Association of Internet Hotlines INHOPE.
  • 40 reports were forwarded to internet service providers, website owners, social media managers in various countries with a Notice and Take Down (NTD) flag on illegal internet content on their websites or networks for soonest possible removal.
  • 45 reports were forwarded to the Office of the Inspector of Journalistic Ethics for further investigation regarding information suspected of having negative effects on minors.
  • 13 reports were forwarded to the Police Department for further investigation regarding suspected illegal content on Lithuanian servers.

No further action was taken regarding other reports, as they reported on content that was neither harmful, nor illegal under Lithuanian law, or was posted on foreign servers where such content is not considered illegal, or was unavailable (e.g., password protected, published in private closed groups, etc.), or was not found (the content was removed or the links were inactive).

Moreover, in 156 cases RRT experts advised social network users on the removal of illegally posted personal or harmful information, on the recovery of hijacked accounts, and on setting appropriate security and privacy options on social networks. Compared to Quarter 2 of 2019 (advice provided in 89 cases), the percentage of advice provided grew by 75%.

RRT hereby reminds that according to the Law on Education of the Republic of Lithuania, upon learning of a case of public bullying in cyberspace, the parents (guardians, caregivers) of violent minors and minors subject to violence must report it to RRT, and other persons have the right to do it. In Quarter II of 2020, RRT received 36 reports of bullying in cyberspace. In 16 cases the information was confirmed and appropriate action was taken.

All internet users are called on to report the content that is illegal (posting of which is prohibited) or harmful (having negative effects on minors) using the internet hotline “Clean Internet”, at the address https://svarusinternetas.lt/. Reports may also be anonymous.

Please watch this video to see how to report illegal or harmful content online, and how the received reports are followed up: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXRBMU4sfOk. Please find more information on safe and responsible online behavior at: www.draugiskasinternetas.lt and www.esaugumas.lt.

About the internet hotline Clean Internet

RRT internet hotline has been operating in Lithuania since 2007, under the “Safer Internet” project funded by the European Commission. The consortium partners of the project “Safer Internet” are the National Agency for Education, RRT, the association “Langas į ateitį” and the Public Institution “Vaikų linija”. Together with public and private sector partners, the consortium implements various initiatives to encourage the public to act responsibly online, and is engaged in the prevention of illegal and harmful content in cyberspace. 47 internet hotlines currently operate in 43 countries around the world, and are united by the International Association INHOPE. RRT internet hotline has been a member of INHOPE since 2008.

Updated on 2020-08-03