Reid Targets Online Paedophiles

A “kite mark” standard is being planned by the home secretary to help protect children from internet paedophiles. John Reid told GMTV he planned a system of approved software so parents could feel assured their child was safe from paedophiles while online. He said the idea was to have a system which alerts parents if trigger phrases were used while their child was online.

More details of the measures, which he called “a major step forward”, would be unveiled on Wednesday, he said. “Protecting children is probably the biggest obligation of a civilised society,” he told GMTV’s Sunday Programme. We are setting up a task group with the industry to protect kids from what has become one of the greatest threats of abuse, which is the World Wide Web, the internet.

“Mums and dads who are getting familiar with the internet know the dangers to their kids. What they don’t know is which of the systems of software which are available to them will actually protect their children. We are working with service providers and the industry to get a standard kite mark so that parents will know when buying a system that it will do what it says on the box, that it will protect kids from approaches made via the internet and the potential abuse from that contact.”

Mr Reid also said he was still considering whether or not to give out more information about the whereabouts of known paedophiles, and in particularly whether the information could be given to at-risk groups.

These might include, for instance “young mothers or single parents who may be prey to paedophiles whose aim is to court them and ingratiate themselves with them”. It “won’t be too long” before the government’s proposed new measures were announced, he added.