Child Online Protection Portal Launched

The Ministry of Communications through the National Cyber Security Center on Thursday October 1, 2020 launched the Child Online Protection Portal (COPP) at the Accra Digital Centre in the Greater Accra Region as part of activities for the National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM). The portal is designed to protect children from online sexual harassment and other internet related abuses.

 This year’s National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) is on the theme “Cyber security in the era of COVID-19.” It is an initiative of the Ministry of Communications and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) to educate the public especially children on hygienic internet, online practices and highlight efforts by the government to promote cyber security in the country.

In an address read on behalf of the Minister for Communications, the Deputy Minister for Communications, Alexander Abban, explained that the development of the COPP had become necessary in view of the increasing use of the internet by children for studies due to the outbreak of Corona virus. He disclosed that, the use of the internet for studies and research had become an important part of ‘our everyday lives’ and children constituted 30 per cent of the 50 per cent global online population. 

The Minister said the COPP will provide the opportunity for children to report online harassment to the appropriate authorities for action including the pulling down of inappropriate content which might not be suitable for the consumption of children on the internet.

According to her, since the operationalization of Point of Contact (POC), the National Cyber Security Centre has received countless cybercrime/ cybersecurity incident reports from the public, including online fraud, publication of non-consensual intimate images (sextortion), online impersonation and malware attacks website defacement.

The Minister therefore expressed the hope that child online protection would complement the cybercrime/cybersecurity incidents reporting Points of Contact (POC), which was launched last year to facilitate the reporting of cybercrime and cyber security incidents by the public.

Speaking at the event, the National Cyber Security Advisor, Dr. Antwi Bosiako said Ghana was making huge inroads in cyber security and had been selected by ECOWAS to lead and become the hub of cyber security in West Africa.

Also present at the event were the Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection, Mrs. Cynthia Mamle Morrison, the US Ambassador to Ghana, Stephanie S. Sullivan, and the country representative of UNICEF Ghana, Ms. Anne-Claire Dufay and Mr. Christopher Lamora, Charge᷄ d’ Affaires.