Microsoft and Child Safety
Microsoft has a multi-tiered approach to the
complex issue of child safety onlinesite regulation and
advice; industry collaboration; and consumer technology. We have
clear procedures in place to regulate chat rooms, one of which
is having dedicated chat room moderators who will close down any
site where content violates our Code of Conduct.
We work closely with bodies across
the industry, like the Home Office Task Force on Child Protection
and we seek advice from organizations such as the NSPCC and ChildNet.
We offer advice for children and
parents online, and we have a UK site dedicated to just thishttp://www.onlinesafety.msn.co.uk
This has been localised and rolled out to over 20 international
markets to date. We also have a general site about being safe
We are constantly reviewing our products
to improve and add new features in order to (i) prevent children
coming into contact with undesirables, and certain sites (ii)
reduce the amount of abuse and violations to our code of conduct.
As a key industry member of the Home
Office Task Force on Child Protection, consisting of government,
industry, charities and the police, we recently supported the
awareness campaign targetedat parents and children. The Task Force
is reviewing various aspects of online communications to include
chat and IM to name a couple. This collaboration led to the Task
Force persuading the CRB to insert an exception so that chatroom
moderators operating in the UK would have the ability to get police
checks (will include spent and unspent convictions)
We sit on the Funding Council of
the IWF (Internet Watch Foundation) the UK Hotline.
We have an excellent relationship
with local and national law enforcement and have undertaken an
extensive training programme to educate key staff to assist police
work and provide information. This has been an industry first
and warmly welcomed by the police. We provide material which the
police can use in evidence in court.
We are also one of the founding Board
members of ICRA (Internet Content Rating Association) and have
RASCi ratings within content advisor in IE.
In the US, Microsoft introduced a
technology solution, Kids Passport, that allows parents to choose
which web sites they want to allow their children's personal information
be collected and used. The product is currently being reviewed
pending a rollout to European markets.
We have recently donated a sizeable
amount to ChildNet in order for the organization to continue with
their valued work.
We are developing extensive teaching
modules on online safety to be used through the Encarta Class
Server, and these will also be available on the online safety
site to download. These will enable teachers teach "online