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Report on performance

This section sets out eSafety’s performance as set out in the Portfolio Budget Statements (PBS):

Outcome 1: A communications and media environment that balances the needs of industry and the Australian community through regulation, education and advice.

Program 1.3: Support positive online experiences through national leadership and administration of statutory schemes and educational and awareness activities that promote online safety for all Australians.

Introductory statement

I, Julie Inman Grant, eSafety Commissioner, present the following information in relation to the Office of the eSafety Commissioner. In my opinion, this information accurately reflects the performance of the Office of the eSafety Commissioner in the 2018–19 financial year.

Julie Inman Grant
eSafety Commissioner

Assistance and investigations

Cyberbullying

Performance criteria:

Operation of a complaints scheme to deal with serious cyberbullying affecting Australian children.

Target:

Effectively and efficiently administer a complaints-based scheme to deal with serious cyberbullying by providing a safety net, high quality advice, support pathways and targeted evidence based educational resources.

Results:

Met

The cyberbullying complaints scheme allows the reporting of activity that targets Australian children and is likely to seriously threaten, humiliate, harass or intimidate. It also encompasses:

  • formal cooperation with key social media services as part of eSafety’s social media service
  • tier scheme
  • referrals to key support services, including Kids Helpline
  • memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with state education departments, and the independent and Catholic school sectors
  • a range of educational and informative resources to support young people and their carers in dealing with the effects of cyberbullying.
Complaints scheme data

eSafety received 531 complaints about cyberbullying between 1 July 2018 and 30 June 2019, an increase of 30 per cent from 2017–18. Young Australians aged between 13 and 17 were the primary targets of reported cyberbullying material, accounting for approximately 71 per cent of the complaints received (see figure below).

Figure 2.2: Target of cyberbullying material by age, 2018–19Target of cyberbullying material by age, 2018–19

Of the complaints received, 64 per cent related to cyberbullying material targeting females
(see figure below).

Figure 2.3: Target of cyberbullying material by gender, 2018–19Target of cyberbullying material by gender, 2018–19

The majority of cyberbullying complaints made to eSafety in 2018–19 were made by children
(see figure below).

Figure 2.4: Complaint by groupComplaint by group

The cyberbullying material referred to in these complaints can be broken into eight general categories. A complaint may relate to one or more of these categories. The figure below details the percentage of complaints that relate to each of the categories.

Figure 2.5: Percentage of complaints identifying general categories of cyberbullying, 2018–19Percentage of complaints identifying general categories of cyberbullying, 2018–19
Note: A complaint may have multiple categories, so cumulative figures will exceed 100 per cent.

eSafety received complaints from across Australia (see figure below). Just over half (54 per cent) of complaints originated from New South Wales and Queensland.

Figure 2.6: Location of cyberbullying target, 2018–19Location of cyberbullying target, 2018–19

Tier scheme social media partners

The EOS Act provides a two-tiered scheme for the fast removal from social media services of cyberbullying material targeted at an Australian child. Tier 1 social media services participate in the scheme on a voluntary basis, whereas the Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts declares a social media service to be a Tier 2 service following a recommendation from the Commissioner. During 2018–19, no additional social media services were added to the scheme.

Referrals to key support services

eSafety aims to resolve cyberbullying complaints in a holistic and empowering manner. Most complainants are directed to support services, such as Kids Helpline, Parentline and eHeadspace. eSafety’s website provides a variety of practical resources, including clear instructions on how to block, delete and report unwanted material on popular social media services.

During the reporting period, there were also over 3,470 website click-throughs from eSafety’s website to the Kids Helpline website.

Where appropriate, eSafety works with schools to resolve complaints, ensures cyberbullying policies are followed, and provides advice. Between 1 July 2018 and 30 June 2019, 24 complaints were brought to the attention of schools.

Cyber abuse

In June 2017, with the expansion of eSafety’s role to promote online safety for all Australians, eSafety also started providing general guidance and support for adults who are dealing with cyber abuse. In 2018–19, eSafety received requests for assistance from 950 adults, an increase of 204 per cent from 2017–18. The majority of complainants were women, and many related to the same cyberbullying behaviours on the same social media platforms that have been reported by children. eSafety does not have formal powers to investigate adult cyber abuse.

Image-based abuse

Performance criteria:

Operation of a complaints portal to deal with image-based abuse affecting Australians.

Target:

Effectively and efficiently administer a portal to address image-based abuse complaints including the provision of high-quality advice, support pathways and targeted evidence based educational resources.

Results:

Met

The EOS Act was amended in the reporting period to establish a civil penalties scheme to address the non-consensual sharing, or threatened sharing, of intimate images, otherwise known as image-based abuse (IBA).

The civil penalties scheme came into effect on 1 September 2018 and furthers the important work that eSafety has been doing in combating image-based abuse since October 2017.

In recognition of the serious and harmful nature of image-based abuse, the civil penalties scheme offers victims relief by facilitating the rapid removal of intimate images that have been posted online. The civil penalties scheme also enables eSafety to hold the person responsible for the image-based abuse accountable through a range of remedies, which include issuing formal warnings or infringement notices and seeking an injunction or civil penalty order from a court.

Reports data

During the reporting period, eSafety received:

  • 950 reports of image-based abuse (see figure below). This represented a substantial increase over the 259 reports of image-based abuse received between 17 October 2017 and 30 June 2018 in the previous reporting period
  • 241 enquiries about image-based abuse
  • over 136,450 visits to its image-based abuse portal (esafety.gov.au/iba).

Between the start of the civil penalties scheme on 1 September 2018 and 30 June 2019, eSafety:

  • received 849 reports of image-based abuse
  • gave one removal notice and issued three formal warnings to persons responsible for
  • image-based abuse—the removal notice was complied with
  • sent eight informal warnings to persons responsible for image-based abuse, adopting an educative approach to enforcement in appropriate cases given the newness of the civil penalties scheme.

Figure 2.7: Number of IBA reports by month, 2018–19Number of IBA reports by month, 2018–19

Excluding reports received that involved sextortion, victims of image-based abuse were predominately female (70 per cent)—see figure below.

Sextortion is a form of blackmail where a person threatens to reveal intimate images of the victim unless their demands, typically for money, are met. Victims of sextortion are overwhelmingly male.

Figure 2.8: IBA victims by gender, 2018–19 (excluding sextortion)IBA victims by gender, 2018–19 (excluding sextortion)
* Other includes not provided or reporter preferred not to disclose.

eSafety helps victims of image-based abuse, whatever their age. The majority of reports of
image-based abuse concerned adult victims—accounting for over 75 per cent of reports received (see figure below).

Since 1 September 2018, eSafety has been capturing a more detailed age breakdown, shown in the figure below (prior to this date, eSafety only asked victims to indicate whether they were ‘under 18’ or ‘18 or above’).

Figure 2.9: IBA victims by age, September 2018–June 2019IBA victims by age, September 2018–June 2019

While not mandatory for reporters to tell us their state or territory, over two thirds of reports included this information (see figure below). eSafety received reports from every state and territory in Australia, with the majority from New South Wales, followed by Victoria.

Figure 2.10: IBA victims by state or territory, 2018–2019IBA victims by state or territory, 2018–2019

During the reporting period, eSafety sought removal of image-based abuse material from over 1,700 locations where the material was available across 130 different platforms. eSafety was successful in having image-based abuse material removed in 90 per cent of cases where removal was requested, despite the material invariably being hosted overseas. The majority of the material was posted on pornography sites. Only a small portion of reports concerned material posted on social media sites.

eSafety also alerted social media services to almost 300 accounts that were being misused to share or threaten to share intimate content, or to elicit intimate content from minors.
The types of image-based abuse behaviours most often observed from reports during the reporting period are summarised in the figure below.

Figure 2.11: Percentage of IBA reports by type 2018–2019Percentage of IBA reports by type 2018–2019
* Other can include impersonation accounts and digitally altered images.

CyberReport

Performance criteria:

Operation of a complaints scheme for the removal of online content that breaches legislative standards.

Target:

Effectively and efficiently deliver a complaints scheme to take down illegal online content including referral to Australian and international enforcement mechanisms.

Results:

Met

CyberReport is the section of eSafety responsible for overseeing the operation of the Online Content Scheme established under schedules 5 and 7 of the BSA. The section prioritises reports about online child sexual abuse material (CSAM) and works closely with law enforcement and other bodies here and overseas to achieve the rapid takedown of such material.

Online Content Scheme

The scheme is a reporting mechanism for Australians to complain about offensive and illegal online content. CyberReport investigates these reports and acts on material found to be ‘prohibited or potentially prohibited’. These categories are defined in terms of classification guidelines that also apply to offline content such as film and video. They include:

  • offensive depictions of children, such as child sexual abuse content
  • content advocating terrorism
  • instruction, incitement or promotion of crime or violence
  • sexually explicit content.

Responsibilities under the scheme include:

  • investigating complaints made under schedules 5 and 7 to the BSA into potentially offensive or illegal online content
  • directing take-down of prohibited content if it is hosted in Australia
  • notifying all potentially illegal Australian-hosted content to law enforcement
  • notifying all overseas-hosted CSAM to the Australian Federal Police (AFP) or International Association of Internet Hotlines (INHOPE), for rapid police action and take-down in the host country
  • notifying prohibited URLs to optional end-user filters.
Online content complaints data

eSafety focuses on reports of online CSAM and is a longstanding member of the INHOPE network, whose member hotlines work together with the goal of identifying and removing online child sexual abuse content worldwide. For more information, refer to ‘The INHOPE network’ section of this report.

A single complaint may lead to multiple investigations, depending on its nature and content. During 2018–19, eSafety finalised investigations into 12,126 individual items of content. Of these investigations, 9,242 items of prohibited and potentially prohibited content were identified (see Table 2.1), of which 91 per cent met the definition of child sexual abuse content.

None of these items were found to be hosted in Australia, and so no take-down notices were issued to Australian content hosts during the reporting period.

Over 99 per cent of investigations into CSAM items were completed within two business days and notified to the AFP and/or the INHOPE network. Over 90 per cent of all online content complaints received were actioned within two business days. Over 99 per cent of all investigations about online content were completed within 20 business days.

All overseas-hosted prohibited and potentially prohibited items of internet content were referred to vendors of optional end-user internet software filters under Schedule 5 of the BSA and relevant internet codes of practice.

Under the BSA, prohibited content is defined with reference to the classification categories set out in the National Classification Scheme. Table 2.1 shows the breakdown by content type of online content items actioned as a result of completed investigations in which prohibited or potentially prohibited content was located.

Table 2.1: Sufficiently serious internet content 2018–19, items actioned

Actual or likely classification and description of online content

Online content hosted in or provided from Australia (take-down, service-cessation or link-deletion notice issued, or removed after referral to police)

Internet content items hosted overseas (referred to makers of filters)

RC 1(b)

(Refused Classification content for offensive depictions/descriptions of children)

0

8,441

RC 1(c)

(Refused Classification content for instruction, incitement or promotion of crime or violence)

0

20

RC9A

(Refused Classification for films that advocate terrorist acts)

0

39

Total

0

8,500

Abhorrent violent material

In April 2019, the Australian Parliament passed the Criminal Code Amendment (Sharing of Abhorrent Violent Material) Act 2019 (the AVM Act). Under the AVM Act, the eSafety Commissioner may issue a notice to content services or hosting services in relation to abhorrent violent material (AVM) provided via their service.

AVM includes content recorded by a perpetrator or their accomplice of conduct including terrorism leading to serious injury or death, murder and attempted murder, rape, torture
and kidnapping.

A notice issued by eSafety (AVM notice) serves to bring the AVM to the attention of the
service. A failure by the service to expeditiously remove the material may be a Commonwealth criminal offence.

Since April 2019, eSafety has issued four AVM notices.

The INHOPE network

Membership of INHOPE is key to ensuring illegal child sexual abuse content is actioned quickly and effectively for removal. Comprising 46 hotlines from countries around the world, INHOPE has a unique role in global efforts to eradicate online CSAM. Content referred to an INHOPE hotline is passed on to local police or service providers for follow-up action. In the vast majority of cases, content is removed in fewer than three days.

eSafety is an active member of the INHOPE network, contributing 8,158 reports through the network in 2018–19.

Education and awareness

Performance criteria:

Promote online safety for all Australians.

Target:

Provide audience-specific and research-based advice, content, and programs to raise awareness about key online safety issues and empower all Australians to have safer online experiences.

Results:

Met

Online safety programs and resources

eSafety focuses on meeting broad community needs by providing online safety education through various delivery platforms and resources—promoting, coordinating and leading online safety education for Australians nationally.

During 2018–19, eSafety expanded its online safety channels and resources for children, parents and teachers to include:

  • the YeS (Young and eSafe) Project—a digital and social health program that encourages young people aged 14–17 to act as positive leaders and supportive friends in their online spaces. The YeS workshop and educator guides include planning templates, facilitator notes and supporting research. Since its launch in September 2018, the program has been downloaded over 7,500 times.
  • The Lost Summer—an educational role-playing video game where players are confronted with a variety of challenges, including conflicts on social media, cyber-attacks and fake news. The game is accompanied by classroom activities for teachers. Over 28,000 users have downloaded the game since its release in July 2018.
  • updated parent and carer education resources to complement the Start the Chat campaign—this new material focuses on equipping parents and carers with strategies to help families deal with online issues such as cyberbullying, online pornography, sending nudes and sexting, time online, gaming and unwanted contact.

The Early Years Online Safety Program is an initiative that addresses the need for online safety information and practices for children from birth to five years. This program will focus on resources for early childhood educators and services. It will also provide parents and families with information and advice so they can implement safe online practices and support their young child from the time they first go online at home. The resources are being developed in consultation with early childhood educators and parents and carers from diverse backgrounds, as well
as early childhood experts and peak bodies. It will involve a phased delivery of resources throughout 2019–20.

eSafety is also developing a national online safety best practice guide that will provide information and resources to schools on best practice approaches to online safety. This work is in response to recommendations from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse as well as the Education Council’s work program into bullying and cyberbullying. Since February 2019, eSafety has consulted extensively with state and territory government and non-government education stakeholders to ascertain where schools need additional information and support. Work is underway on developing resources, for the first stage of delivery by the end of 2019.

Your Online Journey

In February 2019, eSafety released an app specifically designed for use in remote Indigenous communities.

Your Online Journey was developed in partnership with Indigenous communities of Koonibba and Yalata in SA and Hay in NSW, to help address the digital literacy and safety needs of remote communities by providing straightforward and easy to understand information, including the fundamentals of using mobile devices and social media safely.

Outreach program

eSafety Outreach supports an extensive education program for school students, pre-service teachers, educators, parents/carers, community organisations, sporting groups, law enforcement, welfare agencies, and mental health and youth workers.

Virtual classrooms

The eSafety Outreach program reaches wide audiences by using virtual classrooms and webinars. The presentations are live and delivered by expert trainers with interactive elements, including live chats and polling. In 2018–19, eSafety delivered three main webinar events for schools, including:

  • Safer Internet Day—‘Your digital superpower’
  • National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence—‘Bouncing back from online bullying’
  • National Child Protection Week—‘Cyberbullying and blackmail: Online friends and strangers’.
Professional learning program

eSafety launched a new online safety professional learning program for teachers. The program includes three webinars for educators—‘Digital CPR’, ‘Empowering families and community’ and ‘Inclusion and digital wellbeing’. Introduced in April 2019, the new program is accredited by the NSW Education Standards Authority and the ACT Teacher Quality Institute, allowing teachers to gain accredited professional development hours on completion of the course.

In 2018–19, eSafety provided online safety outreach education to over 124,000 students, parents, educators and community workers (see Table 2.2).

Table 2.2: Total activity, 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019

Type of outreach program

Attendees

Events

Virtual classrooms

105,107

39

Pre-service teacher presentations (face-to-face and webinars)

1,160

21

Community face-to-face presentations

8,651

158

‘Teacher Professional Learning’ webinars

7,277

96

Other presentations (including at conferences and seminars)

2,260

17

Total

124,455

331

Voluntary certification scheme for online safety program providers

During 2018–19, eSafety conducted an internal review and consultation on the voluntary certification scheme for Certified Training Providers. eSafety will relaunch this program in 2019–20 under the title Trusted eSafety Providers. The updated program will build on the previous model and focus on ensuring providers meet high thresholds in content quality, are up-to-date with the latest online safety trends and research and are a part of a collaborative community of practice where they work closely with eSafety on best practice approaches to online safety education.

Digital literacy for older Australians—Be Connected

The Be Connected program aims to increase the confidence, skills and online safety of older Australians, specifically addressing the needs of those who are either digitally disengaged or have very basic skills. The Be Connected website employs interactive learning experiences to help users develop digital skills and engage safely online. Now, with over 214 activities, quizzes, games and practice areas, eSafety’s content consistently receives over 91 per cent user satisfaction rating.

This financial year, the learning website has supported over 92,814 users, with more than 90,000 completed learning activities and over 2.4 million page views.

The ‘eSafety with Be Connected’ webinars were launched in 2018. These free webinar presentations support older Australians to stay safer online and encompass topics such as: ‘Staying safe on Facebook’, ‘Safer shopping online’ and ‘Can you spot a scam?’. This year, more than 2,400 older Australians have participated in these webinars and presentations.

In March 2019, eSafety launched the Digital mentoring of older Australians research and began to pilot Be Connected Young Mentors, an inclusive, intergenerational mentoring program for high school-aged youth and older Australians. This structured program facilitates essential digital learning for older Australians and gives young people the opportunity to develop valuable teaching, communication and leadership skills.

The Get Started app, a resource to help family and friends in their approach to supporting older Australians with their digital journey, was released in May 2019. It is available free through the Apple and Google app stores.

eSafetyWomen

Since its launch in mid-2016, eSafetyWomen has successfully supported frontline workers and empowered Australian women to manage technology risks and abuse.

The esafety.gov.au/women website has been developed to support women by providing a range of helpful how-to videos giving step-by-step guidance on the privacy and security features on a range of popular platforms and devices. This is brought to life through case studies that illustrate the issues women face and how they were resolved. The site also features a personal technology check-up, and virtual tours of technologies commonly found in homes, in cars and on mobile devices. The most frequently accessed resources continue to be ‘Include the technology checkup’, ‘Take the tour’, and ‘What is cyberstalking’ interactives.

eSafetyWomen website

During 2018–2019, the eSafetyWomen website received 23,855 unique visits, with 99,925 pages of content viewed.

eSafetyWomen resources for women from CALD communities

In February 2019 eSafety released a range of guides in 12 community languages. These were developed in close consultation with experts and backed by eSafety’s research that demonstrated women from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities face multiple barriers in seeking support for online harassment, stalking, or threats they experience as part of domestic violence. Since March 2019, 9,059 factsheets have been downloaded.

Training for frontline workers

The eSafety face-to-face workshops continued to deliver essential training to raise awareness of technology-facilitated abuse and what can be done in response. In 2018–2019 more than 150 workshops were held supporting more than 3,400 frontline workers.

These workshops provide a detailed view of technology-facilitated abuse—how it manifests and what action can be taken. These workshops provide those working in the domestic and family violence field with the knowledge to support women and families experiencing or recovering from this type of abuse.

Almost 10,000 frontline workers have benefited from this program since its inception and eSafety continues to receive overwhelmingly positive feedback on the workshops—82 per cent of respondents to the post-workshop survey rated the presentations as ‘excellent’ and another 17.5 per cent as ‘good’.

eSafetyWomen—online training for frontline workers was established to complement the existing face-to-face eSafetyWomen workshops to give greater access to frontline workers who may not be able to attend in-person training. This year more than 1,900 frontline workers, many in rural and remote areas, have become registered users.

Safety by Design

eSafety commenced work on its Safety by Design (SbD) initiative in June 2018, with a goal to create a set of SbD principles to guide online service providers as they assess, review and embed user safety into their product and services.

The development of SbD principles and best practice falls under eSafety’s remit as set out in the EOS Act paragraphs 15(1)(b), (c), (l), (p)(i). These functions are:

  • to promote online safety
  • to support and encourage the implementation of measures to improve online safety
  • to consult and cooperate with others on online safety
  • to formulate, in writing, guidelines or statements that recommend best practices for persons or bodies involved in online safety for Australians.

At its core, SbD seeks to place the safety and rights of users at the centre of the design, development and deployment of online products and services.
A three-pronged consultation exercise was undertaken by eSafety:

  • industry—a total of 57 organisations were invited to consult, including:
    • members of eSafety’s Online Safety Consultative Working Group (OSCWG)
    • companies represented in our cyberbullying complaints scheme
    • other industry members and key stakeholders involved in safeguarding users online
  • parents and carers:
    • questions relating to SbD were included in eSafety’s 2018 Parent Survey, a nationally representative survey of 3,520 parents and guardians of children aged 2 to 17
  • young people:
    • a five-day structured online forum was held with 123 young people aged 14 to 17.

Following this consultation exercise, a set of principles was developed to better protect and safeguard citizens online. They are intended to encourage a paradigm shift in how technology companies measure and manage risk and embed safety protections.

Research

Under the EOS Act, eSafety has key roles in research about online safety, including to:

  • collect, analyse, interpret and disseminate information
  • support, encourage, conduct and evaluate research
  • publish reports and papers relating to online safety.

eSafety’s research program takes a leadership role in promoting, coordinating and undertaking research into digital participation and online safety issues. In developing the research program, eSafety continues to engage with leading research agencies and other channels, including the Commissioner’s OSCWG.

During 2018–19, eSafety released a range of research including:

  • Parenting in the digital age, and infographics:
    • Digital families—connected homes and technology usage
    • Digital parenting—supervising pre-schoolers online
    • Digital parenting—managing screen time
  • Encouraging the digital participation of older Australians through mentoring
  • eSafety for Women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds
  • Parenting and pornography: findings from Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

During the reporting period, eSafety also commissioned a range of new research to support program delivery and targeted communications. This research aims to:

  • understand the experiences and support needs of education, health and law enforcement frontline workers in responding to online safety issues
  • understand the prevalence rates for a range of negative online experiences such as cyberbullying, hate speech and image-based abuse within a representative sample of
  • Australian adults
  • provide insight into the experiences of Indigenous Australians with technology-facilitated abuse
  • provide insights into the eSafety needs of Australian youth living with an intellectual disability
  • understand the beliefs, attitudes and motivation of adults who perpetrated image-based abuse.

Communications and stakeholder engagement

The eSafety website, esafety.gov.au, is the agency’s primary online platform for providing safety information and resources for a range of audiences, including young people, parents and carers, teachers, older Australians and women experiencing technology-facilitated abuse. The website also provides access to eSafety’s complaints-based services, where the public can report serious cyberbullying, image-based abuse and illegal online content.

During 2018–19, the website received 1,218,407 visitors, with 3,858,791 pages of
content viewed.

National online safety awareness campaign

During the first half of 2019, eSafety played a key role in the planning and delivery of a national online safety awareness campaign, led by the Department of Communications and the Arts (DoCA). The campaign, Start the Chat, and its messages, focused on parents, carers, teachers and others with young people in their lives, raising awareness of online safety issues and empowering the audience to have positive, constructive conversations with their children.

This was the first large-scale campaign associated with eSafety and involved advertisements placed in mainstream media, including online, print, radio and television, as well as
outdoor advertising.

The campaign also included extensive public relations outreach to mainstream media outlets, as well as tailored outreach to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and culturally and linguistically diverse audiences.

Media

eSafety uses a range of media channels to effectively communicate with stakeholders and the broader Australian community, including:

  • Traditional media—eSafety regularly features in media coverage across TV, radio, print and online, providing authoritative commentary on online safety issues and promoting the agency’s programs, services and expertise.
  • Social media—maintaining active engagement across a range of social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and LinkedIn. eSafety’s followers increased by more than 20 per cent during 2018–19.
  • Blog—eSafety continued to utilise its public-facing blog to raise awareness, provide information and promote eSafety’s services in relation to a wide range of online safety issues. Twenty-three blogs were published during 2018–19.
  • Electronic direct mail—eSafety’s monthly electronic direct mail newsletter eSafetynews highlights the latest eSafety resources and advice to a list of over 26,500 subscribers, tailored to their specific online safety interests.
Partnerships

eSafety works cooperatively and productively with domestic and international organisations to increase education and awareness about online safety. Partners include government agencies, not-for-profit organisations, corporations and community-based groups, with work ranging from distributing educational material, supporting events and community awareness-raising weeks to co-developing content.

During 2018–19, eSafety joined with organisations to raise awareness of online safety
issues through:

  • National Child Protection Week, 2–8 September 2018
  • National eSmart Week, 2–8 September 2018
  • Stay Smart Online Week, 8–14 October 2018
  • The Crossroads Trans-Tasman Online Safety Conference, 10–11 October 2018
  • Day for Daniel, 26 October 2018
  • Safer Internet Day, 5 February 2019
  • National Day of Action Against Bullying and Violence, 15 March 2019
  • No More Harm Conference, 25–26 March 2019
  • Privacy Awareness Week, 12–18 May 2019.
Online Safety Consultative Working Group

The OSCWG is eSafety’s advisory forum attended by key representatives from industry, government and non-government organisations, law enforcement, child advocacy, education, academia and not-for-profit groups. Meetings provide an opportunity to consult on key issues relating to enhancing online safety for all Australians.

During the reporting period, meetings were held in July and November 2018. Discussions included consideration of the Safety-by-Design framework and principles, contributing to eSafety’s strategic planning and environmental scanning process and providing input into the Fourth Action Plan 2019–2022 of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010–2022. In August 2018, OSCWG members also participated in an international roundtable discussion with Travis Bright, Director of Product at Thorn.

Online Safety Consultative Working Group membership

  • Alannah and Madeline Foundation
  • Attorney-General’s Department
  • Australian Federal Police
  • Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association
  • Australian Psychological Society
  • Bravehearts Foundation
  • Carly Ryan Foundation
  • Communications Alliance
  • Cyber Safety Solutions
  • Department of Communications and the Arts
  • Department of Education and Training
  • Department of Home Affairs
  • Department of Social Services
  • Digi Group
  • Enex TestLab
  • Facebook
  • Google
  • Interactive Games and Entertainment Association
  • National Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect
  • National Children’s Commissioner, Australian Human Rights Commission
  • Office of the eSafety Commissioner (Chair)
  • Office for Women, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
  • Optus
  • PROJECT ROCKIT
  • Queensland Police Service
  • ReachOut Australia
  • Reality & Risk Community Education Project
  • Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology
  • Telstra Foundation
  • Twitter
  • Western Sydney University.
eSafety and Mental Health Steering Group

In January 2018, eSafety formed the eSafety and Mental Health Steering Group, comprising representatives from Australia’s key mental health and online safety organisations. The group’s goal is to harness its collective resources to help combat cyberbullying and promote help-seeking strategies for individuals at risk of harm.

One of the group’s intentions has been to change the media messaging around links between suicide and cyberbullying; in particular, to minimise additional harm and the possibility of suicide contagion by erroneously linking cyberbullying with suicide. Group members met twice in 2018–19 to discuss anti-cyberbullying initiatives and propose effective media messaging that focuses on help-seeking behaviours. The group also communicated regularly between meetings as issues arose.

eSafety and Mental Health Steering membership

  • Alannah and Madeline Foundation
  • Australian Federal Police—ThinkUKnow
  • Australian Multicultural Foundation
  • Beyond Blue
  • Blackdog Institute
  • Butterfly Foundation for Eating Disorders
  • Children and Young People with a Disability Australia
  • Everymind
  • Headspace
  • Lifeline
  • Office of the eSafety Commissioner (Chair)
  • Orygen
  • PROJECT ROCKIT
  • ReachOut Australia
  • Sane Australia
  • The Carly Ryan Foundation
  • Yourtown.
Government observers
  • Department of Communications and the Arts
  • Department of Health
  • Department of Education.