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Lack of safeguarding checks leaves children vulnerable to online abuse

Peter Bradley, Kidscape's Director of Services, represents Kidscape on the Children's Charities Coalition on Internet Safety

It has recently come to the attention of the Children's Charities Coalition on Internet Safety (CHIS) that ICANN (The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers), is not keeping the internet safe and secure for children. A new domain, .kids, can be bought by anybody wishing to set up a new website, without any relevant safeguarding checks taking place - even those with criminal convictions or child sex offenders can purchase this domain suffix.

CHIS is asking ICANN to take preventative measures in safeguarding website domains, and is also asking the government to put pressure on ICANN to address this oversight (other domain names, such as .pharmacy or .insurance are only distributed to those organisations passing a series of stringent tests to ensure they are fit and proper to act in these fields of work).

Today CHIS sent a letter to the Prime Minister, the Home Secretary, and the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport to ask them to support its concerns and directly intervene with ICANN.

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