The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) recently launched a global project aimed at protecting children who use the Internet, especially in developing countries. Entitled Child Online Protection (COP), this initiative is part of the Global Cybersecurity Agenda, launched in May 2007. The initiative has five objectives: identify risks and vulnerabilities to children in cyberspace; create awareness; develop practical tools to help minimize risk; share knowledge and experience.
The ITU considers that the COP is clearly necessary and stresses that, according to recent surveys, over 60% of children and teenagers talk in chat rooms on a daily basis, while 3 in 4 children online are willing to share personal information about themselves and their family in exchange for goods and services. The same surveys also indicate that in 5 children will be targeted by a predator or paedophile each year.