EU to Promote Safe Use of Internet

BRUSSELS (06/15/2000) - Hoping to promote the safe use of the Internet, the European Commission Thursday announced financing for 10 new projects in the field.

The projects will be financed under the European Union's Action Plan on promoting safer use of the Internet. The plan covers 1999-2002 and provides 25 million euros ($25 million) in funds to develop measures to deal with illegal content on the global network.

The newly financed projects involve five initiatives to develop technical ratings and filter mechanisms designed to empower parents to control Internet use by their children, the Commission said in a statement.

Two other projects involve promoting awareness among parents and teachers on both the potential of the Internet and the means to protect children from undesirable content.

Finally, other projects will involve setting up new hotlines for the public to report illegal content on the Internet.

The projects were announced simultaneously with two reports on parental control technologies, which concluded that further improvements are needed. One of the main weaknesses, according to the report, is that more content must be labeled before any filtering system can function.

Project specifications and the reports are available at http://www.ispo.cec.be/iap/.

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