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News from the field

Family Online Safety Institute launches in Europe

Published on: 26.02.07
Source: Press release FOSI

On February 22, 2007 the Internet Content Rating Association (ICRA) launched the Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI) in Europe to continue its work and offer an extended range of products and services as part of a broader mission that incorporates technology, events, public policy and education.

The new Institute's vision is to increase safety, decrease fear and expand the benefits of the increasingly connected online world, particularly for children, while protecting freedom of speech and expression.

FOSI, which is supported by leading telecoms and technology companies across the globe, including BT and Microsoft, will incorporate the work of ICRA, the world's leading content labeling system on the Internet, and become an umbrella body where technology and policy thought leaders meet and innovate to increase online safety for families.

Because FOSI's key objective is to promote dialogue and discussion between leaders in government and technology, the European launch is being held at the centre of government in the UK, the House of Commons in London.

Stephen Balkam, CEO of FOSI said: In this always on, digital world, things change quickly and we continually need new tools and methods to help keep families safe when they're online. Every day, we read stories about how people are finding new ways to access inappropriate content on the Internet with the last technologies - just as an example, the Nintendo Wii had been out less than a month before someone found out how to use it with adult content, which means that it was also open to children.

Nick Truman, chairman of FOSI and head of internet security at BT, said: This is a watershed moment for the Internet. Not only does the new Family Online Safety Institute offer the technologies and underlying mission of ICRA, it also brings together the leading thinkers, technologists, academics, regulators and legislators to discuss and put into practice the means to help make a safer Internet a reality.

About the Family Online Safety Institute

The Family Online Safety Institute is an international non-profit organization that exists to identify and promote best practices, tools and methods in the field of online safety. FOSI is supported by many of the leading Internet industry players: AOL, AT&T, British Telecom, Cisco, CompTIA, GSM Association, IMSafer, Kingston Communications, Microsoft, Mpower Media, RuleSpace, Solarsoft, StreamShield, Telmex

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